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ALLEN LOUIS JOHNSON


is honored on Panel 1W, Line 107 of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

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REMEMBRANCES

  • Fallen AIr Force Comrade

    Posted on 6/3/18 - by george_sledge9@msn.com
    Will never forget the night of December 28, 1972 when you and your crew were lost over North Vietnam. We all knew what our sacrifices could end up being during Linebacker II. I think of it every year during Memorial Day and Veterans Day. You and your crew's ultimate sacrifice will not be forgotten.
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  • Remembered

    Posted on 11/3/16 - by Lucy Conte Micik bennysgift@gmail.com
    DEAR CAPTAIN BALDWIN,
    THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE AS A SPECIAL FORCES QUALIFIED TANK UNIT COMMANDER. TODAY IS MY BIRTHDAY, AND I FEEL IT IS IMPORTANT TO HONOR THOSE OF YOU WHO DIED IN SERVICE TO THIS NATION. AND VETERANS' DAY IS APPROACHING, MAY THE SAINTS AND ANGELS GUIDE YOU. REST IN PEACE.
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  • Final Mission of MAJ Allen Johnson

    Posted on 5/18/14 - by wkillian@smjuhsd.org
    Frustrated by problems in negotiating a peace settlement, and pressured by a Congress and public wanting an immediate end to American involvement in Vietnam, President Nixon ordered the most concentrated air offensive of the war--known as Linebacker II--in December 1972. During the offensive, sometimes called the "Christmas bombings," 40,000 tons of bombs were dropped, primarily over the area between Hanoi and Haiphong. White House Press Secretary Ronald Ziegler said that the bombing would end only when all U.S. POWs were released and an internationally recognized cease-fire was in force. Linebacker II flights generally arrived over Hanoi in tight cells of three aircraft to maximize the mutual support benefits of their ECM equipment and flew straight and level to stabilize the bombing computers and ensure that all bombs fell on the military targets and not in civilian areas. The pilots of the early missions reported that "wall-to-wall SAMS" surrounded Hanoi as they neared its outskirts. The Christmas Bombings, despite press accounts to the contrary, were of the most precise the world had seen. On December 28, 1972, twelve aircraft were assigned to strike the Trung Quang rail yards near Hanoi. One three-ship cell was code-named Cobalt. The second B52D in the flight, Cobalt 01, assumed lead in the cell because the other two were experiencing problems with their electronic warfare equipment. At about 2330 hours, the cell turned inbound on Hanoi and went to independent bombing mode, meaning each aircraft used its own radar to locate and attack the target. The cell saw medium to heavy antiaircraft fire ahead and soon began receiving SAM signals and saw SAM launches beginning. A total of 45 SAMs were fired at the cells. When Cobalt 01 was within sixty seconds of bomb release, two SAMS locked on and began tracking the aircraft. Lewis was able to evade these two, but received a near-direct hit by another while still in a violent evasive turn. Every crew member onboard received injuries from the impacting SAM fragments. The crew consisted of CAPT Frank D. Lewis, pilot and aircraft commander; CAPT Sam Cusimano, co-pilot; MAJ Allen Johnson, Electronic Warfare Officer (EWO); LTC Jim Condon, radar navigator; 1LT Bennie Fryer, navigator; and MSGT Jim Gough, gunner. CAPT Frank D. Lewis, the pilot, attempted to maintain control of the aircraft as it headed west, but he knew the aircraft had taken a fatal hit and was going down. The wings were on fire and the ruptured fuel tanks fed the rapidly spreading fire. All electrical systems were out, as well as the crew interphone system. The pilot verbally gave the order to bail out only forty seconds after the SAM impact. Lewis ejected, and the crew followed. The gunner, MSGT James A. Gough, could not hear the ejection order, but knew that he would soon have to bail out. The flames from the burning aircraft extended back on both sides of the B-52 to the gunner's turret, and he decided to wait for a better chance as long as the aircraft was still in level flight. By then, the other crew members who were able to eject had departed the plane. When the gunner saw that the aircraft was descending into the low undercast, he knew he had to leave then or lose his chance. When he jumped, he went through burning debris of the disintegrating engines and wings and had numerous pieces of wiring and metal fragments embedded in his body. Luckily, Gough was able to deploy his parachute. He was captured soon after he landed on the ground. The pilot, CAPT Lewis, was lucky to be captured alive after he landed in a rice paddy. A North Vietnamese peasant took Lewis' revolver and would have killed him on the spot if the gun had been loaded. As the click, click of the empty pistol sounded, NVA troops approached and captured Lewis alive, taking him from the custody of the peasant. Meanwhile, the other crew members had also landed and were being captured by NVA troops. All had ejected except for the navigator, 1LT Ben L. Fryer, who was apparently killed by the SAM explosion. Lewis and Condon were reunited soon after they were captured. After having been taken to Hanoi, Lewis believes he heard his EWO, MAJ Johnson scream not too far away. The thought that Johnson was also encouraged him -- he worried about his crew. Lewis was subjected to the same harassment and torture by his captors that many returned POWs have described. After a month in solitary, he was moved to the "Zoo" where he was reunited with Gough, Condon, and Cusimano. Together, they reconstructed the shootdown. Notably, LTC Condon, the radar navigator, remembers hearing three ejection seats going above him before he ejected. These three would have been the EWO (Johnson), pilot (Lewis) and co-pilot (Cusimano). LTC Condon said that 1LT Bennie Fryer was apparently killed in the SAM explosion, as he collapsed forward on the nav table and was bleeding profusely. His seat was the closest of any crew member to the point of impact of the SAM. Condon himself was wounded in the leg by shrapnel, and tried shaking Fryer and yelling at him to arouse him, but got no response. The fate of Maj. Allen Johnson is still a mystery. The surviving crew members believe that he ejected from the aircraft, and Lewis believes he was alive and in the hands of the North Vietnamese, because he heard what he believed to be Johnson screaming. Further, Lewis' interrogator told him that Johnson was a black man, a fact not revealed by any of the crew in interrogation. Then on September 30, 1977, the Vietnamese "discovered" and returned the remains of Bennie L. Fryer. It was not until December 4, 1985 that the Vietnamese returned the remains of Allen L. Johnson. The positive identification of these remains was announced publicly in June 1986. The Vietnamese denied knowledge of either man until their remains were returned. [Narrative taken from pownetwork.org; image from wikipedia.org]
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  • Remembering An American Hero

    Posted on 1/27/14 - by Curt Carter ccarter02@earthlink.net
    Dear LTC Allen Louis Johnson, sir

    As an American, I would like to thank you for your service and for your sacrifice made on behalf of our wonderful country. The youth of today could gain much by learning of heroes such as yourself, men and women whose courage and heart can never be questioned.

    May God allow you to read this, and may He allow me to someday shake your hand when I get to Heaven to personally thank you. May he also allow my father to find you and shake your hand now to say thank you; for America, and for those who love you.

    With respect, and the best salute a civilian can muster for you, Sir

    Curt Carter
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  • Another outstanding EW

    Posted on 5/8/08 - by Derek H. Detjen, Major, USAF (Ret) hockeynut2@bellsouth.net
    Allen also came through RTU at Castle and I had the pleasure both to teach him the D-model and also to fly with him before his departure for Guam. He was a wonderful young crewdog, and I will always remember his friendly demeanor and outgoing personality. Rest in peace, Allen
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The Wall of Faces

Brought to you by the organization that built The Wall, the Vietnam Veterans Virtual Memorial Wall is dedicated to honoring, remembering and sharing the legacies of all those who died in the Vietnam War. Here you can go beyond the names on The Wall to see the faces, share the stories and read the remembrances posted by friends, neighbors, classmates and family members.