Lance LaGrange – K.I.A.


 

Preferred Name: Lance

Nickname/Call Sign:

Date of Birth: 1945 (July 2, 1968)

Highest Military Grade Held: 1st Lieutenant

Hometown: Maspeth, NY

Biography

Lance LaGrange was KIA flying an F-100 from the 31st TFW at Tuy HOA AB near Binh Dinh province in Vietnam during an LZ Prep mission.  He had just finished a 6 month F-100 Cannon AFB, NM after a year of pilot Training at Craig AFB, AL where he finished at the top of his class. Lance was a Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute graduate and likely met his future bride Charlene (Charley) during college.

LaGrange died on July 2, 1968. He had been in Vietnam for less than a month.  Lance was the”sole surviving son” of a WWII fighter pilot who was also KIA.
(source: Who Are Those Guys, by Thomas Mangen available on ebook at Amazon.com: “Countless children, students, and adults have gone to Washington, D.C., to stand before the Vietnam Wall. Many others have stood before traveling versions of the wall, but for those who did not lose someone special in the war, the experience might not be as meaningful as it is for others. Thomas Mangan, a Vietnam veteran and longtime journalist, examines the lives of the Americans who died in the war and tells how they paid the ultimate price for freedom in this extensively researched handbook that reveals the people behind the list of names. The book serves as a resource for teachers, schoolchildren, and anyone seeking to make their visit to the wall more educational, meaningful, and inspiring. By reading about those whose names are on the wall, you’ll approach it with a new perspective. Whether you’re a student, a teacher, soldier or a member of a veterans organization, you’ll gain a deeper appreciation for the freedom we enjoy from the stories of bravery and sacrifice in Who Are Those Guys?”)

Casualty Date
Jul 02, 1968
Cause
Hostile, Died
Reason
Air Loss, Crash – Land
Location
Binh Dinh
Conflict
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
54W 037, Cemetery Unknown

From the Utica NY Observer, dated 1968:
Husband of Utican Dies In Vietnam Air Crash
“A Queens native and husband of a Utica woman was killed in a plane crash as he was returning from a mission in Vietnam. The Defense Department’s casualty list Includes the name of 1st Lt. Lance LaGrange, 23, husband of Charlene Carson LaGrange. Mrs. LaGrange has been living with her parents… since her husband left for Vietnam a month ago.
He has been in the Air Force for two years. When he was a student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, he participated in the ROTC program. He had been stationed In Clovis, New Mexico, before leaving for Vietnam. The couple has no children.”

Units Assigned

  • 1967-1968 Pilot Training Craig AFB, AL
  • 1968 F-100 Training, Cannon AFB, NM
  • 6/6/1968  306th Tactical Fighter Squadron/31st Tactical Fighter Wing/7th Air Force, Tuy Hoa AB, Vietnam

Awards & Decorations

Aviator (Basic)
 Purple Heart
 National Defense Service Medal
 Vietnam Service Medal (with Oak Leaf Cluster)
 Vietnam Gallantry Cross (with Palm)
 Vietnam Campaign Medal
Vietnam Wall of Honor Location: P-54W / L-37

Flight Info

F-100

Military Education

Civilian Education

1962-1966 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY

Biography

Biography

Lance LaGrange was KIA flying an F-100 from the 31st TFW at Tuy HOA AB near Binh Dinh province in Vietnam during an LZ Prep mission.  He had just finished a 6 month F-100 Cannon AFB, NM after a year of pilot Training at Craig AFB, AL where he finished at the top of his class. Lance was a Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute graduate and likely met his future bride Charlene (Charley) during college.

LaGrange died on July 2, 1968. He had been in Vietnam for less than a month.  Lance was the”sole surviving son” of a WWII fighter pilot who was also KIA.
(source: Who Are Those Guys, by Thomas Mangen available on ebook at Amazon.com: “Countless children, students, and adults have gone to Washington, D.C., to stand before the Vietnam Wall. Many others have stood before traveling versions of the wall, but for those who did not lose someone special in the war, the experience might not be as meaningful as it is for others. Thomas Mangan, a Vietnam veteran and longtime journalist, examines the lives of the Americans who died in the war and tells how they paid the ultimate price for freedom in this extensively researched handbook that reveals the people behind the list of names. The book serves as a resource for teachers, schoolchildren, and anyone seeking to make their visit to the wall more educational, meaningful, and inspiring. By reading about those whose names are on the wall, you’ll approach it with a new perspective. Whether you’re a student, a teacher, soldier or a member of a veterans organization, you’ll gain a deeper appreciation for the freedom we enjoy from the stories of bravery and sacrifice in Who Are Those Guys?”)

K.I.A.
Casualty Date
Jul 02, 1968
Cause
Hostile, Died
Reason
Air Loss, Crash – Land
Location
Binh Dinh
Conflict
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
Not Specified
Wall/Plot Coordinates
54W 037, Cemetery Unknown

From the Utica NY Observer, dated 1968:
Husband of Utican Dies In Vietnam Air Crash
“A Queens native and husband of a Utica woman was killed in a plane crash as he was returning from a mission in Vietnam. The Defense Department’s casualty list Includes the name of 1st Lt. Lance LaGrange, 23, husband of Charlene Carson LaGrange. Mrs. LaGrange has been living with her parents… since her husband left for Vietnam a month ago.
He has been in the Air Force for two years. When he was a student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, he participated in the ROTC program. He had been stationed In Clovis, New Mexico, before leaving for Vietnam. The couple has no children.”

Units - Education - Awards - Flight Info

Units Assigned

  • 1967-1968 Pilot Training Craig AFB, AL
  • 1968 F-100 Training, Cannon AFB, NM
  • 6/6/1968  306th Tactical Fighter Squadron/31st Tactical Fighter Wing/7th Air Force, Tuy Hoa AB, Vietnam

Awards & Decorations

Aviator (Basic)
 Purple Heart
 National Defense Service Medal
 Vietnam Service Medal (with Oak Leaf Cluster)
 Vietnam Gallantry Cross (with Palm)
 Vietnam Campaign Medal
Vietnam Wall of Honor Location: P-54W / L-37

Flight Info

F-100

Military Education

Civilian Education

1962-1966 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY

Photos
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