MANGINO, THOMAS ANGELO
Name: Thomas Angelo Mangino
Rank/Branch: E4/US Army
Unit: Company A, 4th Battalion, 31st Infantry, 196th Light Infantry Brigade
Date of Birth: 16 March 1944 (Lyons OH)
Home City of Record: Alliance OH
Loss Date: 21 April 1967
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 152118N 1084704E (BS622987)
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Other Personnel In Incident: Paul A. Hasenback; David M. Winters; Daniel R.
Nidds; (all missing)
REMARKS: DISAPPEARED ON SAMPAN
Source: Compiled from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S.
Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published
sources, interviews. Updated by the P.O.W. NETWORK.
SYNOPSIS: On April 21, 1967, SP4 Thomas A. Mangino, squad leader; PFC Paul
Hasenback, PFC David M. Winters and PFC Daniel R. Nidds, riflemen; were
returning from a combat patrol in the second of two sampans 100 meters apart
near Chu Lai, Quang Ngai Province, South Vietnam.
Just before arriving at their destination, a Vietnamese civilian was seen
moving in his sampan toward the sampan carrying SP4 Mangino's squad. Another
sampan with 3 Vietnamese women was moving toward the first sampan, in which
the platoon leader rode. The first sampan started to leak, so proceeded
faster around and headed toward the beach. The Vietnamese women were still
following the first sampan. The distance between the two sampans carrying
the Americans was 200-250 meters.
The last time the platoon leader saw Mangino's sampan, the Vientamese
civilian was talking with SP4 Mangino's squad. The platoon leader's sampan
arrived at the beach 45 minutes later, and waited 20 minutes, then reported
to the command post that Mangino's sampan had not yet arrived.
Two hours after the platoon leader's sampan beached, SP4 Mangino's sampan
had still not arrived, so search efforts were begun. Two platoons searched
the area, and a helicopter searched from the air using a loud speaker. All
efforts were unsuccessful in locating Mangino and his squad.
Navy divers searched the river area without success. All aboard Mangino's
sampan knew how to swim. The Army strongly suspects that the enemy knows
what happened to Mangino and his squad.
Although returned POWs did not report having seen the men lost on the
sampan, Nidd's photo was identified by a refugee as having been a prisoner
of war. The circumstances surrounding their loss indicates the strong
possibility, at least, that the enemy forces knew their fates.
Mangino and his squad are among nearly 2500 in Southeast Asia who did not
return from the war. Unlike "MIAs" from other wars, most of these men can be
accounted for. Further, and even more significant, mounting evidence
indicates that there are hundreds of them still alive in captivity.
Refugees fleeing Southeast Asia have come with reports of Americans still
held in captivity. There are many such reports that withstand the closest
scrutiny the U.S. Government can give, yet official policy admits only to
the "possibility" that Americans remain as captives in Southeast Asia.
Until serious negotiations begin on Americans held in Southeast Asia, the
families of nearly 2500 Americans will wonder, "Where are they?" And the
families of many, many more future fighting men will wonder, "Will our sons
be abandoned, too?"
SUMMARY SELECTION RATIONAL
NAMES: MANGINO, Thomas A., SP4, USA
WINTERS, David M., PFC, USA
NIDDS, Daniel R., PFC, USA
HASENBECK Paul A., PFC, USA
OFFICIAL STATUS: MANGINO: MISSING
NIDDS: DEAD, BODY NOT RECOVERED
HASENBECK: DEAD, BODY NOT RECOVERED
CASE SUMMARY: SEE ATTACHED
RATIONALE FOR SELECTION: When last seen, all of the men were alive and
unhurt in a sampan, and all could swim. An extensive search found nothing.
One informant report indicates possible capture, but there have been no
subsequent reports of death for any of the individuals in this incident.
REFNO: 0646 19 Apr 76
(U) CASE SUMMARY
1. On 21 April 1967, SP4 Thomas Mangino squad leader, and PFC's Paul A.
Hasenbeck, David M. Winters and Daniel R. Nidds, riflemen,- were returning
from a combat patrol in Quang Ngai Province in South Vietnam in the second
of two sampans. Just before arriving at their destination, in the vicinity
of grid coordinates BS 622 987, a Vietnamese civilian was seen moving in
his sampan toward the sampan with SP4 Mangino's squad. Another sampan with
three Vietnamese women was moving toward the first sampan in which the
platoon leader rode. The first sampan started to leak, so proceeded faster
around a jetty toward the beach. The Vietnamese women were still following
the first sampan, as they had loaned it to the platoon. The distance
between the two sampans carrying the platoon was now 200 to 250 meters. The
last time the platoon leader saw the second sampan the Vietnamese civilian
was talking with SP/4 Mangino's squad. The first sampan arrived on the
beach 45-minutes later. The platoon leader waited 20 minutes more and then
reported to the command post that the second sampan had not arrived.
2. Two hours after the first sampan beached, SP4 squad still had not
arrived, so a search effort was begun. Two platoons searched the area, and
helicopters, one with a loudspeaker, searched from the air. All efforts
were unsuccessful. Naval divers searched in the area of the last sighting
(vicinity BS 622 987) without success. All personnel on board the second
sampan could swim. (Ref 1)
3. An informant reported that on 5 May (1967) he had seen four US prisoners
of war who had been captured at (GC) 630 005 by a Viet Cong unit on the
date of this incident. (This information correlates well by time and
location, although there is no other information available for
verification. (Ref 2)
4. During the existence of JCRC,, the limited information available
precluded any efforts toward the resolution of this case. These
individuals' names and identifying data were turned over to Four-Party
Joint Military Team with a request for any information available. No
response was forthcoming.
5. SP4 Mangino, and PFC Winters are currently carried in the status of
Missing in Action. PFC Hasenbeck and PFC Nidds are carried in the
presumptive status of Dead, Body Not Recovered.
1. RPT (U), AVAFAG-P2 Investigation of Personnel MIA, 4 May 67.
2. RPT (U), Missing Status, AVHAG-C, 15 Apr 68.
1. Paul A. Hasenbeck 0646-0-01
2. Thomas A. Mangino 0646-0-
3. David M. Winters 0646-0-
4. Daniel R. Nidds 0646-0-04
* National Alliance of Families Home Page
Use your Browser's BACK function to return to the PREVIOUS page