Today in History – March 2, 1969 – Maj Christos C Bogiages, Jr. flying a THUD is MIA

The Plain of Jars region of Laos was long been controlled by the communist Pathet Lao and a continual effort was made by the secret CIA-directed force of some 30,000 indigenous tribesmen to strengthen anti-communist strongholds there. The U.S. committed hundreds of millions of dollars to the secret war effort in Laos. Details of this operation were not released to Congress and the American public until August 1971. (1)

On March 2, 1969, MAJ Christos C. Bogiages Jr. was serving with the 7th Air Force, 355th Tactical Fighter Wing, 357th Tactical Fighter Squadron and was sent on a mission over the Plain of Jars in Laos in an F-105D Thunderchief (tail number 61-0109, call sign “Barracuda 1”).

Maj. Bogiages aircraft went down in Xiangkhoang Province, Laos, about 5 miles southwest of the city of Ban Na Mai.) as the lead aircraft on a strike mission of two over Laos. While en route to their original assigned target, the flight was diverted to work with a forward air controller (FAC) against another target. After dropping its bombs, Maj Bogiages’ aircraft made strafing passes against the target. On his second pass, the FAC saw Maj Bogiages make a normal recovery before his aircraft suddenly made a steep right turn and crashed on a hill in the vicinity of (GC) UG 056 443. The FAC believed that hostile ground fire had struck the plane, causing the crash. No parachute was seen, and no emergency radio beeper signals were heard. Immediate search efforts were driven off by enemy small arms fire, and later search efforts failed to locate the pilot’s remains. According to 1989 public information from the U.S. Air Force, Maj. Bogiages’ aircraft was hit by hostile fire and crashed. (1)

He was listed as MIA, declared dead while missing. 35 years later, his remains were found, identified, and repatriated. He was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery.

Bogiages was born on March 30, 1934, in Clearwater, FL. He entered the USAF through the regular military.


Source: (1) [Narrative is taken from; image from]
Additional sources: TheWallofFaces,


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