SNIDER, HUGHIE FRANKLIN

Name: Hughie Franklin Snider
Rank/Branch: E4/US Army
Unit: HHC, 1st Battalion, 77th Armor, 1st Brigade, 5th Infantry Division
Date of Birth: 29 April 1949
Home City of Record: New Cumberland WV
Date of Loss: 28 April 1970
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 165054N 1071510E
Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered
Category: 4
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: Boat (some sources say ground)
Other Personnel in Incident:
(none missing)

REMARKS:

SYNOPSIS:
On Apri 1970, SP4 Hughie F. Snider was taking a swim break with his unit in Quang Tri Province, South Vietnam. While many of the men were swimming, the undertow became treacherous and carried Snider out to sea. Several attempts were made to keep him afloat, but eventually the individuals involved could no longer keep up the effort. Helicopters searched the area, but could find no sign of Snider. Local fishermen and a Navy destroyer were asked to look for him, but with no results.

Snider's is one of the unfortunate accidental deaths that occur wherever people are. The fact that he died an accidental death in the midst of war is tragically ironic. He is listed among the missing with honor, because his body was never found to be returned to the country he served.

Others who are missing do not have such clear cut cases. Some were known captives; some were photographed as they were led by their guards. Some were in radio contact with search teams, while others simply disappeared.

Since the war ended, over 250,000 interviews have been conducted with those who claim to know about Americans still alive in Southeast Asia, and several million documents have been studied. U.S. Government experts cannot seem to agree whether Americans are there alive or not. Distractors say it would be far too politically difficult to bring the men they believe to be alive home, and the U.S. is content to negotiate for remains.

Over 1000 eye-witness reports of living American prisoners were received by 1989. Most of them are still classified. If, as the U.S. seems to believe, the men are all dead, why the secrecy after so many years? If the men are alive, why are they not home?