a c k n o w l e d g m e n t s
This book is the material result of years of research and writing, a pro-
cess that began on March 5, 1995, with the discovery of an article in the
Honolulu Advertiser about the efforts being made by the United States
to account for soldiers still missing in Southeast Asia. Along the way, I
have had the exceedingly good (and, I gather, somewhat rare) fortune
of greatly enjoying the research, the writing, and the editorial process
that necessarily accompanies such a project. Apart from personal defi-
ciencies that lend themselves to taking satisfaction in this sort of work,
the rewarding aspects of this enterprise have resulted in substantial de-
greefromtheassistanceI’vereceivedfrommanypeople,mostofwhom
were too generous to know better and each of whom will not here re-
ceivethefullmeasureofthegratitudetheyaretrulyduefromme.None-
theless, I hope the following individuals will take my word for it when
I say that the positive elements of this book are a result of their contri-
butions, and will understand my desire for an equally generous group
of people onto whom I might slough off the numerous shortcomings
that are ultimately my own.
The staff at the Joint Task Force-Full Accounting (jtf-fa) at Camp
H. M. Smith in Honolulu, Hawai’i, was gracious with both their time
and their insights during my research visits there in the spring of 2000.
My thanks in particular to Raymond Spock, then-Director of Intelli-
gence and to Lt. Col. Franklin Childress, the always-accommodating
Public Affairs Officer at that time. I am also indebted to Paul Mather,
Senior Analyst at the Department of Defense Prisoner of War/Missing
Personnel Office (dpmo), who agreed to be interviewed in Honolulu
on very short notice. My thanks as well to Jefferson Willard, former
Linguist/Analyst with Detachment Two of the jtf-fa in Hanoi for his
time and conversation during an impromptu meeting there in Decem-
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