This park honors John Allen Payne (1947-1969), a Sunset Park resident who was killed while serving in the United States Army during the Vietnam War. Payne graduated from Fort Hamilton High School in 1967 and entered the Army the following year. His tour of duty in Vietnam began on October 15, 1968, and he ascended to the rank of Staff Sergeant by the age of 22. John Allen Payne died in a helicopter crash in 1969 in the Khanh Hoa province of South Vietnam. The helicopter, carrying Payne and seven other passengers, was en route to Ban Me Thout, Vietnam. For four years the eight passengers were considered missing. The helicopter wreckage was discovered in 1973, at which time Sergeant Payne’s remains were returned to the United States for burial. He is listed on the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington D.C. on panel 16W, row 031.