William A. Jones

Special Operations Squadron

Medal of Honor



 Colonel William A. Jones, III


1 September 1968

United States Air Force

602nd Special Operations Squadron

Near Dong Hoi

North Vietnam

Colonel William A. Jones, III, flew an A-1H Skyraider on a rescue mission on 1 September 1968 in search of a downed U.S. pilot near Dong Hoi, North Vietnam. Although his aircraft was repeatedly hit by heavy and accurate anti-aircraft fire, he continued his search until he sighted the survivor. Disregarding his own safety, Colonel Jones then attacked a nearby enemy position; his aircraft was again hit destroying the pilotís ejection system and causing the cockpit to burst into flames. Colonel Jones attempted to transmit the location of the survivor, but his calls were blocked by friendly transmissions urging him to bail out. Despite searing pain from severe burns, he elected to fly his crippled aircraft back to his base, where, on the operating table, he reported the survivorís position. As a result, the downed pilot was rescued later in the day. †

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