By Jessica Edwards
A soldier from South Dakota who died during a combat support mission in the Vietnam War has been accounted for, according to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency.
Army Reserve Chief Warrant Officer 3 Larry A. Zich assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 37th Signal Battalion, 1st Signal Brigade in April 1972, according to the agency.
On April 3, Zich was one of four soldiers on a combat support mission from Marble Mountain, Da Nang, South Vietnam, to Quang Tri City, South Vietnam on a UH-1H Iroquois helicopter. Zich was the co-pilot. During the flight, the pilot told a ground control approach controller that he was lost but believed they were near Quang Tri. The controller could not locate the helicopter on radar and reported the crew missing.
The helicopter did not land at any bases in South Vietnam, and an aerial search found no sign of the aircraft or the crew. The Joint Casualty Resolution Center conducted a dozen investigations into this incident between 1993 and 2014.
In April 1988, a Vietnamese refugee gave the Defense Intelligence Agency human remains that reportedly belonged to nine people killed in an aircraft crash and buried in Quang Nam Province. The same month, those remains were sent to a lab in Hawaii.
Scientists used dental, anthropological, and DNA analysis to identify Zich’s remains. He will be buried in Lincoln, Nebraska.