30 November 1957 – Capt Benny Lacombe is killed when he unsuccessfully attempts to bail out of Lockheed U-2A, 56-6704, Article 371, 13 miles SE of Laughlin AFB. Ejection seats had not yet been fitted to U-2s at this point. The history of the U-2 program is fraught with fatalities and crashes. “CIA pilots Wilburn S.
Humberto Robles Hernandez - KIA
Capt Humberto Hernandez graduated from Mesa High School in 1960. On August 15, 1969, he was taking off from Bien Hoa AB when his F-100 crashed.
Gilbert Gonzalez on the WallofFaces.org remembers “I had the pleasure of saluting Capt. Hernandez the day before his tragic accident. I remember he had a great smile as we saluted each other. I was performing guard duty at a Red Horse construction site over looking the runway at Bien Hoa Viet Nam. I heard a loud bang and I noticed an F-100 taking off on the runway.
I also watched as it turned sideways as it was going down. I saw the pilot eject and hit the ground. All the emergency vehicles went to where the plane crashed but could not get too close because of the ammunition exploding. I don’t think that anyone new that he ejected because everyone was going toward the crash site. I did not know it was Capt. Hernandez until the next day. I will never forget that day and I will never forget Capt. Hernandez or his great smile.”
Beto Hernandez had a large and loving family who still post on the WallofFaces.org to honor him. He is buried at the City of Mesa Cemetery, Mesa, AZ and is honored on Panel 19W, Row 42 of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
To see a video honoring Capt Hernandez go to In Memory of Humberto Robles Hernandez Vietnam War Pilot – YouTube
Sources: WallofFaces; Honorstates.org;