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George Andrews Howes

George Andrews Howes

Male 1950 - 1970  (19 years)

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  • Name George Andrews Howes  [1, 2, 3
    Nickname Andy 
    Birth Abt 1950  Little Rock, Pulaski, Arkansas, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    • moved to Knox, Starke, Indiana, USA
    Born 16 Jun 1950  Little Rock, Pulaski, Arkansas, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Gender Male 
    Birth 16 Jun 1950  [2
    Residence Abt 1956  Knox, Starke, Indiana, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    • as stated by Congressman Donnelly
    Service 1970  [1, 2
    Chief Warrant Officr, Helicopter co-pilot, US Army 
    • UH-1C [Huey] helicopter
    Died 10 Jan 1970  Quang Tin, Vietnam Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    Age: 19y 
    • MIA for many years. Declared dead in 1978. Remains repatriated to the US on 7 Jun 1994. Identified on 17 May 2010
    Honour 2011  [3
    See below for a list of medals awarded 
    • Air Medal with Numeral Two

      National Defence Medal

      Vietnam Service Medal with 2 bronze stars

      Vietnam Campaign Medal with "60" device

      Basic Aviation badge

      Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross, citatino with palm

      Purple Heart


    Buried 5 Aug 2011  National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington, Virginia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 3
    George A Howes
    George A Howes
    Knox Indiana Funeral Programme
    George A Howes
    George A Howes
    Knox Indiana Funeral Programme
    George A Howes
    George A Howes
    Obituary Press Release
    Notes 
    • From the South Bend Tribune, 2015 Nov 8


      Laura Golubski climbed up and down grassy hills dotted with white marble headstones at Arlington National Cemetery.

      The Riley High School teacher felt some trepidation on this nearly 100-degree scorcher of a day late this summernear the nation’s capital.

      “I’m sorry I didn’t bring flowers or anything to leave at his grave,” she said.

      Instead, she left a prayer.

      She knelt at the grave of George Andrews Howes, a Knox native who gave his life while piloting a helicopter in Vietnam.

      She prayed for Howes, a stranger she drew a connection with in 1971, a year after his death. Then, suddenly and seemingly from nowhere, the sound of chopper blades cut across the sky.

      She looked up, covered her mouth in awe and cried as she searched the sky. A helicopter was rising just over the horizon.

      It signaled the culmination of her 40-year quest to connect with and honor the sacrifice a young man had made for his country.

      Coincidental bond

      Howes, known by friends and family in Knox as Andy, enlisted in the Army just after he graduated from Knox High School in 1968. He was a chief warrant officer co-piloting a UH-1C “Huey” helicopter near Quang Tin Province in South Vietnam on Jan. 10, 1970.

      He was 19 and flying with the Firebirds, a distinguished gunship unit. Authorities blamed bad weather for the Huey crashing. No wreckage was ever found. Pilot Herbert Crosby, Howes and two other crew members were considered missing for several years.

      Later in 1970, a Los Angeles-based student organization called VIVA (Voices In Vital America) began making POW-MIA bracelets to raise money for the search of the missing in Vietnam. At the time, the aluminum bracelets cost $2.50 and copper $3. They kicked off the sales on Veterans Day 1970. Golubski and her brother bought theirs from their mother, who had started selling them, in 1971. By the time VIVA stopped selling the bracelets in 1976, more than 5 million had been purchased.

      Golubski’s bracelet bore the name “George Andrews Howes.” She wondered for years whether he was missing in action or a prisoner of war.

      Unbeknownst to Golubski, Howes was declared dead in 1978, though he still had not been found.

      In 1993, Golubski attended an exhibit of the Moving Wall monument to service members killed in Vietnam that was visiting the area. That day, she discovered Howes was from Knox.

      “I couldn’t believe that this person was only a few miles down the road from me,” said Golubski, who lives on her family’s farm in South Bend.

      The remains of Howes, who was still unidentified and mostly a mystery to Golubski, were repatriated to the United States on June 7, 1994.

      The Moving Wall returned to the area in October 1996, displayed in Howard Park. Golubski made another visit to the Wall, this time taking her 3-year-old son, Jim. With no knowledge still of Howes’ fate or his job in the Army, Jim brought along a toy Army helicopter.

      “Jimmy always grabbed a toy of some kind — like a Matchbox car or something — when we went out, and that day he grabbed the helicopter,” Golubski recalled.

      Photo and note make connection

      Wearing her bracelet, Golubski bought a POW-MIA shirt that day in 1996. She wrote a note and left it at the monument, in the impossible hope it might reach Howes’ family. At the Wall, Tribune photographer Barbara Allison captured a picture of the Golubskis, which ran in the next day’s newspaper.

      Howes’ mother, Bonnie, was alerted to the photo. And a family friend from Plymouth who had visited the memorial found Golubski’s note and delivered it to Bonnie.

      “I didn’t know him in any way, but somehow feel connected to him,” Golubski had written. Offering to return the bracelet to the family, she signed the note with her name and address.

      Bonnie Howes sent her response on Veterans Day a few weeks later. She enclosed a photograph of her son from the year he left for Vietnam.

      “Your picture in the South Bend Tribune kicked off a tremendous chain of events for us,” Bonnie Howes wrote. “We have moved from Knox so we received a flood of pictures and phone calls. … Now about Andy — the name he was known by — he was a Helicopter pilot, lost in a fog over the So. China Sea. … It has been a long time and we have learned to live with our grief. This episode of your picture in the paper, the response of those who knew Andy plus your dear considerate letter has been an unexpected pleasure for us.”

      She told Golubski her son hoped to become a helicopter pilot for the White House when he returned from Vietnam.

      Golubski jumped at the opportunity to share with the Howes family an amazing coincidence. “I don’t know if you can tell or not, but Jimmy is holding a toy Army helicopter,” she wrote to Bonnie Howes. “Prior to going to the Wall that day, we had no idea Andy was a helicopter pilot. … I think that represents a perfect ending to the story of my search for you.”

      Crosby, Howes’ pilot, was buried in 2007, and the two other crewmates shortly thereafter.

      Finally, on May 17, 2010 — more than 40 years after he was lost — Andy Howes was identified.

      Bones found in a forensic lab in Hawaii were found to be a match with the DNA submitted by his siblings, Robert Lloyd Howes and Valerie Pulver Larew.

      “Identifying Andy’s remains was a pivotal moment for our family,” his sister-in-law, Ann Howes, said in a recent interview rom her home in Arlington, Texas. “The fact that they identified him gave the family a closing place.”

      The grandson of Robert and Ann Howes escorted Andy’s remains home. Serving in Afghanistan at the time, Marine Cpl. Michael L. Bleeker flew to Hawaii and then to Knox and on to Arlington. Bleeker, who is now a Marine staff sergeant stationed in Washington, D.C., made sure Andy’s remains were wrapped in the “dress blues” the family had sent to Hawaii.

      “We saved his dress blues all those years,” Ann Howes said. “Andy went to his grave wearing his own uniform.”

      “Arlington is lovely because you are part of a long line of history,” she added. “But for the family, what happened in Knox is what we needed.

      “We were so blown away by the outpouring of respect. We came in from the airport in Indianapolis, and there was a presidential escort to Knox with Patriot guards and traffic stopped on both sides of the road. I swear everybody in those small towns was standing in line.”

      But Bonnie and Robert Lindell Howes were not alive to witness any of the ceremonies for their son. By the time George Andrews Howes was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery in 2011, his sister, too, was dead.

      “I feel bad that his mother and father never had that closure,” Golubski said. “They died not knowing.”

      ‘He has not been forgotten’

      Golubski shows her Riley students the bracelet every year and her correspondence with the Howes family. Students are fascinated, she says, by stories of young men and women who weren’t much older than they are.

      “It was one of our Riley students (David Cornell) who found the grave on the Arlington website,” Golubski said. The online search drew several of the students who gathered around the computers to learn more. The toll of war was brought home to another generation.

      Jim Golubski, who once carried his toy helicopter to the Moving Wall, went to D.C. on a scholarship his senior year at Riley in 2011. He visited the Wall, and a guard climbed a ladder to make a pencil rubbing of Howes’ name. Golubski has a picture of her son crying into the arms of another student after the etching was handed to him.

      “It was a name on a wall, but to (Howes), it was his life,” Jim said. “And to think that every one of the names was the same situation. It’s not just him. It’s all of them. The gravity of it overwhelmed me.”

      Earlier this year, another of Golubski’s students, Auto Tolentino, sketched a portrait of Howes based on an online photo of the young man at the controls of his Army helicopter.

      “I really hoped I could show this (illustration) to the family,” Golubski said. “I want them to know that he has not been forgotten.”

      She decided that very day to take a summer road trip.

      The trip in August included a visit to the Smithsonian.

      At the National Museum of American History, a fully restored UH-IH Huey covered much of the floor space, and a recording of the helicopter repeated on an endless loop. An exhibit of MIA-POW bracelets was nearby.

      During her trip, Golubski found Howes’ name on the Wall and obtained her own pencil rubbing.

      She later made her way to Arlington, wearing for the first time the POW-MIA shirt she bought at Howard Park in 1996. And her bracelet, of course. She sat alone at the grave for a long time.

      After the helicopter punctuated her prayer, a young priest and an older man approached a grave nearby.

      The older man was a Korean War veteran, as is Golubski’s father. He told Golubski he was visiting his wife and that he will be buried beside her. He asked to hear the story of George Andrews Howes, the young man who will eventually be his neighbor in burial.

      As they turned to leave, both the priest and the veteran told Golubski they would be back.

      And that every time they visit, they will stop by Howes’ grave and say a prayer for him.

      Linda DeCicco is a former editor at The Tribune. She retired in June from her job teaching English. She taught with Laura Golubski and made the trip to D.C. with her.
    • From the US Congressional Record, House of Representatives, 2011 Jul 29


      HON. JOE DONNELLY


      of indiana


      in the house of representatives


      Friday, July 29, 2011


      Mr. DONNELLY of Indiana. Mr. Speaker, today I rise to solemnly honor Chief Warrant Officer 3 (CW3) George Andrews (``Andy'') Howes for his

      dedication and service to the United States of America. CW3 Howes was listed as missing in action on January 10, 1970 when the helicopter he

      was co-piloting disappeared in Vietnam. He was just 19 years old. The remains of CW3 Howes were returned in 1988; however, they were

      not identified until 2010 through an advance in DNA technology. Nearly 41 years after his disappearance, CW3 Howes' surviving family was

      notified that Andy was found at last. He could finally receive the honor and recognition he earned for his service and for his ultimate sacrifice.


      Andy Howes was born in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1950 and his family

      moved to Knox, Indiana in 1956. He graduated from Knox High School in

      1968 and enlisted in the U.S. Army that September. He received his

      wings in August 1969 and was then deployed to Vietnam.

      CW3 Howes flew helicopter gunships while assigned to the 71st

      Aviation Company, 16th Aviation Group and America Division. He flew

      with the Firebirds, a distinguished and decorated gunship unit based in

      Chu Lai, South




      Vietnam. On January 10, 1970, a helicopter piloted by Capt. Herbert

      Crosby and co-piloted by CW3 Howes disappeared while flying in extreme

      weather conditions. In addition to Capt. Crosby and CW3 Howes, crew

      members SFS Francis Graziosi and SFS Wayne Allen were lost in the

      helicopter's disappearance. All of Andy's crew mates have been

      previously identified, making Andy the last of the crew to return home.

      Marine Cpl Michael L. Bleeker, his great-nephew, is escorting his

      remains from Hawaii to Knox, and then to Arlington National Cemetery

      for burial.

      CW3 Howes has been awarded the following medals to honor his service

      and sacrifice: Air Medal with Numeral Two, National Defense Medal,

      Vietnam Service Medal with two Bronze Service stars, Vietnam Campaign

      Medal with ``60'' Device, Basic Aviation Badge, the Republic of Vietnam

      Gallantry Cross Unit Citation with Palm, and the Purple Heart.

      Andy is survived by his brother, Robert Lloyd Howes of Wichita,

      Kansas, in addition to many cousins, nieces and nephews, all of whom

      have kept his memory alive and faithfully waited for the day he would

      come home. Andy's parents, Robert Lindell Howes and Bonnie Andrews

      Howes have passed away, as has his sister, Valerie Pulver Larew.

      It is my solemn duty, and humble privilege, to honor and remember CW3

      George Andrews Howes and a life cut tragically short. Andy stands as a

      testament to the great honor possessed, and sacrifices made, by our men

      and women in the armed forces, and their families. Those who were

      fortunate enough to know him were blessed by his presence--and we are

      all diminished by his loss. I and the grateful citizens of Indiana's

      Second District are deeply grateful that Andy is back home. We mourn

      his passing and offer our solemn gratitude for his service.
    Person ID I104173  ONS
    Last Modified 20 May 2019 

    Father Robert Lindell Howes,   b. 28 Aug 1917, Kansas City, Jackson, Missouri, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 4 Jun 2006, Wichita, Sedgwick, Kansas, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 88 years) 
    Mother Bonnie Jean Andrews,   b. 3 Dec 1920, Knox, Starke, Indiana, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 24 Apr 2009  (Age 88 years) 
    Family ID F30786  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBirth - Abt 1950 - Little Rock, Pulaski, Arkansas, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 16 Jun 1950 - Little Rock, Pulaski, Arkansas, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsResidence - Abt 1956 - Knox, Starke, Indiana, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - Age: 19y - 10 Jan 1970 - Quang Tin, Vietnam Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - 5 Aug 2011 - National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington, Virginia, USA Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Sources 
    1. [S1950] South Bend Tribune, www.southbendtribune.com, 2015 Nov 8.

    2. [S1951] Arlington Cemetery website, http://www.arlingtoncemetery.net, gahowes.html.

    3. [S2979] M C Smith Funeral Home.