Friday, May 07, 2010

Fullbore Friday

I'm going to lift most of this post from USNIBlog as they won't mind and I can't do better.

Captain Jack Fellowes, USN (Ret.) passed away this week in Annapolis, MD. The Naval Institute had an opportunity to hear Fellowes describe his experience as a POW as a part of USNI's Americans at War Series. The teaser video is at the bottom of the post

Fellowes, pilot in squadron VA-65, was shot down in August 1966 while flying an A-6A Intruder on a bombing mission from the aircraft carrier Constellation(CVA-64). His target was Vinh in the panhandle area of North Vietnam. Fellowes’s back was broken by the time he was captured on the ground by militiamen. His bombardier-navigator, George Coker, was also captured. The oral history describes Fellowes’s six-and-one-half-year ordeal in North Vietnamese hands, recounting incidents concerning many of his fellow prisoners. He particularly cited the leadership qualities of POWs James Stockdale, Jeremiah Denton, and Robinson Risner.

Included is discussion of such issues as the quality of military survival training and the importance of moral development; interrogation and torture; minimum medical treatment; meager food rations; usefulness of cigarettes; physical fitness exercise; camp policies; deaths of other prisoners; communication procedures; entertainment the POWs devised for each other; visits to North Vietnam by war protesters such as Jane Fonda; being paraded in public in Hanoi; the futile Son Tay raid of 1970; B-52 raids on Hanoi; concerns about his family members back home and limited correspondence with them. Fellowes was released from captivity in early 1973. The oral history tells of his return, a description supplemented by his article “Operation Homecoming,” which appeared in the December 1976 issue of Proceedings.

Also over at USNIBlog, Bunny has a nice personal note worth your time.


prschoef said...

In case anyone is curious, the reason he is referred to as "Jackie Fe" is that the Viet Namese gave up on pronouncing American names and gave each POW a VN nickname that came as close as they could. "Fellows" became "Fe."

ShawnP said...

One of the most moving parts of the Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola to me was the section that include letters written by POW's. One can only imagine the pain and suffering that these guys went thru for years upon years.

MrSwo said...

CAOT Fellows was my leadership Prof at USNA back in 1991 . . . I couldnt have been luckier and his class still stands out in mind nearly 20 years later.  God bless his soul!