Grayston Lynch

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Grayston L. Lynch
Born(1923-06-14)14 June 1923
Victoria, Texas
Died10 August 2008(2008-08-10) (aged 85)
Tampa, Florida
AllegianceUnited States of America
Service/branchCentral Intelligence Agency, United States Army, DEA
UnitSpecial Activities Division, Army Special Forces, MACV-SOG
Battles/warsWorld War II
Korean War
Project Hotfoot
Bay of Pigs Invasion
Operation Mongoose
Vietnam War
AwardsIntelligence Star (rare CIA valor award), (2) Silver Star, (1) Bronze Star Medal, (3) Purple Hearts

Grayston L. Lynch (14 June 1923 – 10 August 2008) was an American soldier and CIA paramilitary officer in Special Activities Division. He was one of the two CIA officers who commanded the faction of the army that went to war in the Bay of Pigs Invasion. The other agent was William "Rip" Robertson.

Lynch was born in Victoria, Texas and was the son of an oil driller.

He was wounded at Normandy, the Battle of the Bulge, and Heartbreak Ridge in Korea; served with the Special Forces in Laos; and received three Purple Hearts, two Silver Stars and one Bronze Star with a "V" for valor, among other awards. He was selected from the elite to become a Paramilitary Operations Officer in the CIA's famed Special Activities Division (renamed Special Activities Center in 2016 [1]) in 1960. For his extraordinary heroism at the Bay of Pigs, Lynch was awarded the Intelligence Star, the CIA's most coveted award. In the six years after the Bay of Pigs invasion, he ran commando raids into Cuba. Lynch retired from the CIA in 1971.[2]

Military service[edit]

Lynch lied about his age and enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1938 and was assigned to 5th Cavalry at Fort Clark, Texas. During World War II he was assigned to the Second Division as platoon sergeant. During D-day he landed at Omaha Beach and then fought in the Battle of the Bulge where he was seriously wounded. He served in the Korean War with the Second Division as Second Lt., promoted to First Lt., wounded at Battle of Bloody Ridge. Later served in Laos with 77th Special Forces Group as Captain, retiring from them in 1960.


Lynch received a BA degree in political science from the University of Maryland, College Park in 1953.

CIA Career[edit]

In 1960 he joined the CIA working under Theodore Shackley. Grayston spent the majority of his time between Key West and Miami. After the Bay of Pigs Grayston began conducting paramilitary training of Cuban exiles at JM/WAVE and conducted commando raids inside Cuba for six years. He personally led over 100 raids into Cuba.


BNDD Career (DEA)[edit]

(1971 to 1973)
Grayston Joined Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (BNDD) which would later be renamed Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). [3]

BUNCIN Career (DEACON)[edit]

(1973 to 1978)
Grayston was recruited by Lucien Conien into Bureau of Narcotics Counter-Intelligence Network (BUNCIN), later renamed DEA Clandestine Operations Network (DEACON) after the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (BNDD) was renamed Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Bob Medell requisitioned Grayston Lynch to work directly with him in BUNCIN. Lynch's primary task was to identify offshore suppliers of illegal drugs. Grayston had been running secret CIA operations in Cuba, Central and South America for many years and developed numerous clandestine resources. [4]

Published Works[edit]

He wrote a book, Decision for Disaster: Betrayal at the Bay of Pigs, based on his experience leading the rebel Brigade 2506. Lynch is referred to or mentioned in the following books:

  • Corn,D. Blond Ghost. 1994 (76, 82, 84, 111-2, 117)
  • CounterSpy 1976-12 (11-2)
  • Covert Action Information Bulletin 1978-#1 (8, 11-2)
  • Dinges,J. Landau,S. Assassination on Embassy Row. 1981 (286)
  • Escalante,F. The Secret War. 1995 (64, 137)
  • Freed,D. Death in Washington. 1980 (195)
  • Hersh,S. The Dark Side of Camelot. 1997 (172, 275)
  • Hinckle,W. Turner,W. The Fish is Red. 1981 (vii, 61, 88, 99, 121-2, 341-2)
  • Livingstone,N. The Cult of Counterterrorism. 1990 (362)
  • NameBase NewsLine 1997-01 (10)
  • New York Times 1996-04-29 (A10)
  • Prados,J. Presidents' Secret Wars. 1988 (185, 204, 265)
  • Russell,D. The Man Who Knew Too Much. 1992 (518)
  • Scott,P.D. Marshall,J. Cocaine Politics. 1991 (27, 29)
  • Turner,W. Rearview Mirror. 2001 (191, 193, 203)
  • Weiner,T. Legacy of Ashes. 2007 (177)
  • Wyden,P. Bay of Pigs. 1979 (83-6, 301)[5]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Decision for Disaster Betrayal at the Bay of Pigs, Grayston L. Lynch, Publisher: Potomac Books, Inc.,Pub. Date: January 2000ISBN 9781574882377
  3. ^ Spartacus Educational
  4. ^ The History of BUNCIN: The US Bureau of Narcotics Covert Intelligence Network
  5. ^ "Grayston L Lynch". NameBase. Retrieved 2012-01-20.[dead link]

External links[edit]