HINGSTON WILLIAM E JR

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Name: CPT William E. Hingston, Jr.
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 01/24/1967 while performing the duty of Pilot.
Age at death: 26.2
Date of Birth: 11/26/1940
Home City: Braintree, MA
Service: AT branch of the regular component of the U.S. Army.
Unit: A/2/20 ARA 1 CAV
Major organization: 1st Cavalry Division
Service: AT branch of the U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 14E-074
Short Summary: Found co-pilot 1LT Dave Borgeson still alive and strapped in his seat unconscious.
Aircraft: UH-1C tail number 66-00517
Service number: O98760
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 1981 = 19 Rotary Wing Aviator (Unit Commander)
Primary cause: Hostile Fire
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: weapons
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: pilot
Started Tour: 08/03/1966
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - pilot
Length of service: 03
Location: Binh Dinh Province II Corps.

Additional information about this casualty:
I was a section leader flying ARA guns for the 1st Cav in Jan of 1967 and had just signed off on Captain William Hingston USMA "63 to be my replacement.....yes I was short. So on the 24th of the month, Bill led a bread and butter insertion that went by the book and this time I flew wing for him. We waited the traditional 10 plus minutes overhead until the ground commander confirmed no contact and would then release us....but not today. Contact there was and as the ground Cmdr ID'd the bad guys Cpt Hingston set us up to take them out....two pair / three ripples into the tree line and good by Charlie. Bill went in first and fired...as he broke left I began firing to cover his tail. When I broke, I looked back and he was not there to cover me. So I radioed, "Falcon 27 bravo, this is Alpha....over" and over and over and no answer. Finally the ground called in on FM to say your buddy is down, there was another machine gun nest on the side he broke towards. The grunts quickly secured the crash site as I covered them and searched for the other firing position. Soon the bad news came....three of the four were KIA including "Wild Bill" ( nickname dating back to Academy Captain of hockey team) . As usual we cleaned out his locker and I wrote Nancy , his wife, a personal letter as I had so often watched Bill write letters home to her and little Bill and Kim. In this letter I promised them that I would come see her if she wished. I never heard back and subsequently assumed this was too painful for her. Actually she did reply to me sometime after the funeral and grieving but by then I was enroute to the USA, leave and next assignment in Europe and I never got her letter. Fast forward to the 1998 time frame and I saw a message in the VHPA magazine......children of Bill Hingston USMA '63 who was KIA Jan 1967 would like to hear from anyone who knew their dad. The procedure was a responsible system where we would email Gary Roush our contact info , he would then inform the families and they would then contact me. This started pages and pages of emails and hours and hours of telephone calls over the years to the extended family of Wild Bill. In fact one of his sisters came to my flight school (66-2) reunion in 2003....but I still had not kept my promise . So in September I took my wife, golden retriever, Cav Stetson and motor home and drove to Denver from Louisville. I finally got to hug Bills wife and daughter and the four of us had a wonderful visit. The photo may only show three people but believe me....Wild Bill was there. Rodger McAlister A/2/20 1st Cav 66-67

Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Hostile - killed
married male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Religion: Roman Catholic
Burial information: ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY, VA
The following information secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: officer
This record was last updated on 11/18/2008


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Date posted on this site: 09/23/2017


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