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Maj Calvin Walter Maxwell

Maj Calvin Walter Maxwell

Carlsbad, Eddy County, New Mexico, USA
Death 5 Sep 1978 (aged 34)
Cenotaph El Paso, El Paso County, Texas, USA
Plot Section MA, Site 8
Memorial ID 62002518 · View Source
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In Memory of ...... Maj. Calvin Walter Maxwell.
*** Major Maxwell was a member of Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 6th Battalion, 14th Artillery Regiment. On October 10, 1969, he was the observer in a Cessna Bird Dog Observation Aircraft (O-1G) about 5 miles northeast of Dak Pek, Kontum Province, South Vietnam when radio contact was lost. His remains were not recovered. His name is inscribed on the Courts of the Missing at the Honolulu Memorial.

You may be gone, no longer living on this earth; but you will live on - in the memories of your family and friends. There will always be a part of you living in those who knew you. You will live on because we remember you!

CALVIN WALTER MAXWELL - Army - MAJ - O4 1st Field Force
Age: 34
Race: Caucasian
Date of Birth Nov 6, 1943
From: EDDY, NM
Marital Status: Married - His father, Calvin Davis Maxwell, Born Dec. 17, 1917 and Died June 15, 1991, was an Atlantic City Policeman and his Mother, Ruth Williamson Maxwell, Born Nov. 14, 1922 and Died Jan. 29, 1987.

***** Hello, I found your memorial for MAJ Maxwell. I grew up in Carlsbad, New Mexico. I remember when MAJ Maxwell was listed as Missing in Action in Vietnam. His parents, Calvin (Sr) and Ruth Maxwell, were friends of my parents; they were members of the same fraternal lodge and ladies auxiliary. Mr. and Mrs. Maxwell are deceased and are buried at Sunset Garden in Carlsbad. They lived in Carlsbad for many years and were living in Carlsbad at the time their son became MIA. Thank you for your time and your tremendous effort to memorialize these brave individuals who made the ultimate sacrifice.
FAG - Searchers

His tour began on Oct 10, 1969
Casualty was on Sep 5, 1978
Hostile, died while missing, HELICOPTER - NON-CREW
Service: Army of the United States
Grade at loss: O3
Rank: Major
Note: Promoted while in MIA status
ID No: 585031292

Start Tour:
Incident Date: 10/10/1969
Casualty Date: 09/05/1978
Age at Loss: 34 (based on date declared dead)
Location: Kontum Province, South Vietnam
Remains: Body not recovered
Casualty Type: Hostile, died while missing
Casualty Reason: Fixed Wing - Noncrew
Casualty Detail: Air loss or crash over land

Body was not recovered
Panel 17W - Line 63

Other Personnel In Incident: Franklin L. Weisner (missing)

On 10 October 1969, 1st Lt. Franklin L. Weisner, pilot assigned to the 219th Aviation Company, 17th Aviation Group, 1st Aviation Brigade; and then Capt. Calvin W. Maxwell, observer assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 6th Battalion, 14th Artillery; comprised the crew of an O1G Bird Dog (serial #51-11942).

Their assignment was to fly as the "high aircraft" in a flight of two Bird Dogs on a high/low search mission. A high/low search involved a "low" aircraft moving slower and closer to the ground looking for targets while the "high" aircraft confirmed the location and identification of the target.

The low aircraft made radio contact with 1st Lt. Weisner as they were proceeding down a valley about 6 miles northeast of the city of Dak Pek and 30 miles north of Dak To, Kontum Province, South Vietnam. About 10 or 15 seconds after this radio contact with 1st Lt. Weisner, the crew of the low aircraft received a radio transmission in which they heard screams and moans. No further contact could be established with the crew of the high aircraft. Immediately a search and rescue (SAR) operation was initiated.

On 13 October, search aircraft found the wreckage of the Bird Dog lying inverted in a fast-flowing river running through the hotly contested and extremely rugged jungle covered mountains approximately 4 miles south of a primary east/west road and 5 miles east of a primary north/south road that branched off of the first road northwest of the crashsite. Roughly 6 miles east of the crashsite, the east/west road made a 90-degree turn to the south. This location was also 12 miles east of the South Vietnamese/Lao border and 33 miles northeast of the tri-border area where South Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia joined.

Ground search teams were brought into the area by helicopter the next day and confirmed the tail number as being that of 1st Lt. Weisner's and Capt. Maxwell's aircraft. By examining the crash site, the search team established the aircraft hit a cliff above the river and slid into its present position.

They also found barefoot tracks of four people in the area, but no bodies of the missing crew were located in or around the crashsite or downstream.

Military scuba divers were brought in to examine the wreckage for remains. The team reported that both seat belts and shoulder harnesses were still hooked together in the cockpit, but no seat pads remained in the aircraft. One seat pad and an aviator's helmet were located approximately 100 meters downstream of the crash. Further, two 30-caliber holes were found in the aircraft, but because of their location, neither one would have caused the aircraft to go down nor would the bullets have hit either crewman.

For unknown reasons those individuals who visited the crash site before the Americans arrived carried an 8-inch thick tree to the site and left it there. All searches were terminated on 18 October.

At the time the military believed there was a reasonable chance both men could have been swept out of their seats and the aircraft by the swift current without unbuckling their straps, Franklin Weisner and Calvin Maxwell were listed Missing in Action.


Family Members







  • Created by: Eddieb
  • Added: 22 Nov 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 62002518
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Maj Calvin Walter Maxwell (6 Nov 1943–5 Sep 1978), Find A Grave Memorial no. 62002518, citing Fort Bliss National Cemetery, El Paso, El Paso County, Texas, USA ; Maintained by Eddieb (contributor 46600350) .