Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Durkin Tactical Franklin Armory
User Panel

Site Notices
Posted: 5/26/2002 8:18:46 AM EST
My son talked me into chaperoning on his 6th grade trip to DC. While there he bought a POW/MIA bracelet. When I read the paper of basic info that came with it, I almost fell down. Out of the hundreds of bracelets on the table he selected the one honoring SSGT Russell Burr Luker. On reading the name of his home city, Lancaster, OH I thought cool he is from the city I was born in. Then I read his date of loss, 01 February 1966, I almost freaked. That is the exact date of my birth! Same town was weird enough but, the birthday same blows me away.

I now feel compelled to find out more about him. Any info on him or where to find more would be greatly appreciated. Below is all the information I have of him. Thanks in advance,


NAME: Luker, Russell Burr
Rank/Branch: E6/US Marine Corps/SSGT
Unit: VMGR 152, 1st Marine Air Wing
Date of Birth: 17 February 1933
Home City of Record: Lancaster, Ohio
Date of Loss: 01 February 1966
Country of Loss: North Vietnam/Over Water
Loss Coordinates: 172038N 1072217E (YE520190)
Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered
Category: 5
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: KC130F

If you know any info, please let me know.
Link Posted: 5/26/2002 2:49:39 PM EST
God Bless America....

God Bless our Brave Armed Forces !


[URL=http://www.taskforceomegainc.org/l098.html]CLICK HERE[/url]


RUSSELL BURR LUKER was born on February 17, 1933 and joined the Armed Forces while in LANCASTER, OH.

He served as a 6413 in the Marine Corps.  In 14 years of service, he attained the rank of SSGT/E6.

RUSSELL BURR LUKER is listed as Missing in Action.  

You can find RUSSELL BURR LUKER honored on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on Panel 4E, Row 130.
Link Posted: 5/26/2002 2:50:13 PM EST
Name: Russell Burr Luker  
Rank/Branch: Staff Sergeant/US Marine Corps  
Unit: VMGR 152, 1st Marine Air Wing  
DaNang Airfield, South Vietnam  
Date of Birth: 17 February 1933 (Rochester, NY)  
Home of Record: Lancaster, OH  
Date of Loss: 01 February 1966  

Country of Loss: North Vietnam/Over Water  
Loss Coordinates: 172038N 1072217E (YE520190)  
Status in 1973: Killed/Body Not Recovered  
Category: 5  
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: KC130F "Hercules"  
Other Personnel In Incident: Peter Vlahakos; Albert M. Prevost; Galen F. Humphrey; Richard A. Alm; and Donald L. Coates (missing)  

Link Posted: 5/26/2002 2:50:38 PM EST
SYNOPSIS:  The Lockheed C130 Hercules was one of the most versatile aircraft used in the Vietnam War because it served many purposes. Among them were: airborne command and control, weather reconnaissance, search/rescue/recovery, transport, tanker, gunship, drone controller and electronic reconnaissance. The US Marines employed the KC130F version, nicknamed the "Dasc" tanker, primarily as a probe-and-drogue refueling plane, although when the 70,000-gallon rubber fuel bladders were removed from the cargo compartment, the aircraft also served as a transport. The KC130F was capable of refueling two aircraft simultaneously.

On 1 February 1966, 1st Lt. Albert M. Prevost, pilot; Maj. Richard A. Alm, pilot; SSgt. Russell B. Luker, 1st mechanic; GSgt. Galen Humphrey, navigator; SSgt. Donald L. Coates, radio operator; and SSgt. Peter G. Vlahakos, flight engineer; comprised the crew of a KC130F (aircraft #804). The aircraft was conducting a "Dasc" tanker refueling mission for Navy and Marine F4B fighters enroute to bomb the major northern port city of Haiphong. Throughout the mission this aircraft was under direct radar control of the DaNang Control Center.

After the mission to refuel the strike aircraft was cancelled due to poor weather conditions in the target area, the tanker was returning to DaNang Airbase. At 1845 hours, as the aircraft neared Hon Co Island, known to American personnel as "Tigre Island," the crew "saw some unusual flashes on Tigre Island," and they were going to "make another pass to take a look-see." It was standard operating procedure for aircrews to investigate any unusual activity sighted when flying over enemy held territory. Since Tigre Island was believed to be uninhabited at the time, gathering intelligence about new activity on the island was vital. DaNang Control was not unduly alarmed when radio contact was broken.

At 1849 hours, the DaNang Control Center attempted to make radio contact with the tanker, but received no response. Shortly thereafter, the aircraft disappeared from DaNang's ground control radar. A search and rescue (SAR) operation was immediately launched. An extensive search of the water surrounding Tigre Island and the island itself failed to locate any trace of the aircraft and crew. At the time the formal search was terminated, and because the last known position of the tanker was over water, Richard Alm, Galen Humphrey, Peter Vlahakos, Albert Prevost, Donald Coates and Russell Luker were listed Killed in Action/Body Not Recovered.

Later US intelligence learned the NVA had secretly moved several radar-controlled 37mm anti-aircraft artillery (AAA) guns onto the island for the express purpose of trying to shoot down American aircraft that routinely flew over or near the island on their way to and from missions over mainland North Vietnam. Further, they determined this aircraft was lost due to direct enemy action.At the time of last contact, the tanker's location was approximately 48 miles east and slightly south of Dong Hoi, another major enemy port city, less than 10 miles north of Tigre Island and on a direct heading toward it. It was also 23 miles north of the demilitarized zone (DMZ), 105 miles north-northwest of DaNang in the Gulf of Tonkin adjacent to Quang Binh Province, North Vietnam.
Link Posted: 5/26/2002 2:51:11 PM EST
The hard reality is if it was hit in the fuel bladder, it undoubtedly would have exploded in mid air and there would be little wreckage to find. If it was hit by AAA fire, it could have crashed into the water without exploding at altitude first. In either case, it was entirely conceivable there would have been a wreckage debris field of some size floating on the surface. However, with the excellent glide configuration of a C130, there was a possibility it could have reached the island even if it had sustained battle damage.

If Richard Alm, Galen Humphrey, Peter Vlahakos, Albert Prevost, Donald Coates and Russell Luker died in this loss incident, each man has a right to have his remains returned to his family, friends and country if at all possible. However, if they survived their fate, like that of other Americans who remain unaccounted for in Southeast Asia, could be quite different.

Since the end of the Vietnam War well over 21,000 reports of American prisoners, missing and otherwise unaccounted for have been received by our government. Many of these reports document LIVE American Prisoners of War remaining captive throughout Southeast Asia TODAY.

Pilots and aircrews in Vietnam were called upon to fly in many dangerous circumstances, and they were prepared to be wounded, killed or captured. It probably never occurred to them that they could be abandoned by the country they so proudly served.
Link Posted: 5/26/2002 4:03:05 PM EST
Link Posted: 5/26/2002 9:22:44 PM EST
Thanks Striker...
I Sure Missed This Place (my second home) !!! [:D]  

I am well on the way to a recovery.
Did I mention that hospitals AND back pain suck?  
Link Posted: 6/1/2002 9:31:10 AM EST
Patty with Task Force Omega is one heck of a woamn and very nice to talk with.  My father and her correspond alot.
Close Join Our Mail List to Stay Up To Date! Win a FREE Membership!

Sign up for the ARFCOM weekly newsletter and be entered to win a free ARFCOM membership. One new winner* is announced every week!

You will receive an email every Friday morning featuring the latest chatter from the hottest topics, breaking news surrounding legislation, as well as exclusive deals only available to ARFCOM email subscribers.

By signing up you agree to our User Agreement. *Must have a registered ARFCOM account to win.
Top Top