Helicopter UH-1H 67-17316

Information on U.S. Army helicopter UH-1H tail number 67-17316
The Army purchased this helicopter 0368
Total flight hours at this point: 00001227
Date: 09/14/69
Incident number: 690914141ACD Accident case number: 690914141 Total loss or fatality Accident
Unit: 189 AHC
The station for this helicopter was Camp Holloway in South Vietnam
UTM grid coordinates: AR486764
Number killed in accident = 4 . . Injured = 0 . . Passengers = 0
costing 455945
Original source(s) and document(s) from which the incident was created or updated: Defense Intelligence Agency Helicopter Loss database. Army Aviation Safety Center database. Also: OPERA (Operations Report. )
Loss to Inventory

Crew Members:
P WO1 MARSH LARRY GLENN KIA
P WO1 MASON GARY RICHARD KIA
CE SP5 PRITCHARD GALE STEWART KIA
G SP4 CHAMPAGNE THOMAS EUGENE KIA

Accident Summary:

 ON 14 SEPTEMBER 1969, AT APPROXIMATELY 1210 HOURS, WO1 MARSH WAS EXECUTING HIS NORMAL DUTIES OF PILOTING THE COMMAND AND CONTROL AIRCRAFT FOR II CORPS HEADQUARTERS. HE HAD JUST RETURNED TO THE II CORPS LANDING PAD AND DROPPED OFF TWO PASSENGERS. AT THIS TIME WO1 MARSH, HIS CREW, AND 316 WERE RELEASED TO RETURN TO CAMP HOLLOWAY TO HAVE THE NOON MEAL AND RETURN FOR FURTHER MISSIONS IN THE AFTERNOON. THE TAPE RECORDINGS OF RADIO TRANSMISSIONS WERE REVIEWED AND IT WAS LEARNED THAT AT 1218 HOURS GHOSTRIDER 316 CALLED PLEIKU AFB TOWER FOR DEPARTURE FROM THE II CORPS PAD WITH A LOW LEVEL CROSSING OF THE WESTERN EXTENDED. THE REQUEST WAS APPROVED AS THIS WAS THE NORMAL PROCEDURE WHEN GOING FROM II CORPS PAD TO CAMP HOLLOWAY. 316 MADE A NORMAL TAKEOFF AND FLEW TO THE SOUTHWEST. UPON CROSSING HIGHWAY QL 14 THE DIRECTION OF THE FLIGHT WAS CHANGED TO A MORE SOUTHERLY DIRECTION PARALLEL TO THE ROAD. UPON PASSING THE WESTERN EXTENDED OF PLEIKU AFB THE FLIGHT PATH WAS AGAIN CHANGED TO A SOUTHEASTERLY DIRECTION. AT THIS POINT IT IS NORMAL TO GAIN SEVERAL HUNDRED FEET OF ALTITUDE AND CONTACT HOLLOWAY TOWER FOR LANDING. CROSSING HIGHWAY QL 14 AND ABOUT READY TO ENTER HOLLOWAY'S CONTROL ZONE THE AIRCRAFT WAS SEEN TO ASSUME A NOSE HIGH ATTITUDE. BECAUSE OF THE VARIOUS LOCATIONS AND DISTANCES THAT EYEWITNESSES VIEWED THE AIRCRAFT, IT IS BELIEVED THAT THE AIRCRAFT DID NOT EXECUTE A LOOP, BUT HAVING ASSUMED A NOSE HIGH ATTITUDE WITH THE LENGTH OF THE AIRCRAFT BECOMING NEAR PERPENDICULAR TO THE GROUND, FORWARD AIRSPEED WAS DISSIPATED, FIFTY TO ONE HUNDRED FEET OF ALTITUDE WAS GAINED AND AS THE AIRCRAFT REACHED A POINT OF ZERO FORWARD AIRSPEED IT FELL OFF ON THE LEFT HAND SIDE CHANGING THE HEADING OF THE AIRCRAFT TO A NORTHWESTERLY DIRECTION. AT THIS POINT THE AIRCRAFT WAS IN A SEVERE NOSE LOW ATTITUDE AND HAD AN EXCESSIVE VERTICAL DESCENT. THE AIRCRAFT CONTINUED ITS NEAR VERTICAL DESCENT AND HAD ASSUMED AN ALMOST LEVEL ATTITUDE UPON IMPACTING THE GROUND. EVIDENCE AT THE CRASH SITE INDICATED THAT THERE WAS VERY LITTLE AIRSPEED AND THE LEFT HAND SKID CONTACTED THE GROUND FIRST. THE TAPE RECORDINGS, LOCATED AT PLEIKU AFB, INDICATE THAT AN O-2 ON DEPARTURE FROM PLEIKU AFB OBSERVED THE FIREBALL OF THE IMPACTING HELICOPTER AND NOTIFIED THE TOWER OF THE CRASH. THE TIME WAS RECORDED AS 1220 HOURS (LOCAL). THE CONTROL TOW)R HAVING ALSO OBSERVED THE FIREBALL WAS IN THE PROCESS OF NOTIFYING THE CRASH RESCUE CREW LOCATED AT THAT INSTALLATION. A HH-43 KAMAN HUSKY WAS DISPENSING FIRE FIGHTING FOAM OVER THE AIRCRAFT APPROXIMATELY THREE MINUTES LATER AND THE CRASH RESCUE GROUND VEHICLES ARRIVED AT THE SIGHT AT APPROXIMATELY 1227 HOURS. THE BODIES OF THE CRASH VICTIMS WERE REMOVED FROM THE BURNING WRECKAGE AND FLOWN TO GRAVES REGISTRATION.\\

This record was last updated on 05/25/98


The following is crew member information for this incident:


Name: WO1 Gary Richard Mason
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 09/14/69 while performing the duty of Pilot.
Age at death: 23.6
Date of Birth: 02/01/46
Home City: Hendersonville, NC
Service: AV branch of the reserve component of the U.S. Army.
Unit: 189 AHC
Major organization: 1st Aviation Brigade
Flight class: 69-13
Service: AV branch of the U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 18W-084
Short Summary: Flying II Corps General's ship. Had mechanical catastrophic failure after dropping off General enroute to Camp Holloway.
Aircraft: UH-1H tail number 67-17316
Call sign: Ghostriders 316
SSN: 324386846 Service number: W3165073
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 100B = Utility/Observation Helicopter Pilot
Primary cause: A/C Failure
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: fire or burns
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: pilot
Started Tour: 07/09/69
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - pilot
Length of service: 02
Location: Pleiku Province II Corps.
Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Non-hostile - died of other causes
married male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Relgion: Baptist - other groups
The following information is secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: non-battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: warrant officer
This record was last updated on 07/29/94



Name: WO1 Larry Glenn Marsh
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 09/14/69 while performing the duty of Pilot.
Age at death: 28.6
Date of Birth: 01/28/41
Home City: Tallmadge, OH
Service: AV branch of the reserve component of the U.S. Army.
Unit: 189 AHC
Major organization: 1st Aviation Brigade
Flight class: 68-17
Service: AV branch of the U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 18W-083
Short Summary: Flying II Corps General's ship. Had mechanical catastrophic failure after dropping off General enroute to Camp Holloway.
Aircraft: UH-1H tail number 67-17316
Call sign: Ghostriders 316
SSN: 286361729 Service number: W3162259
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 100B = Utility/Observation Helicopter Pilot
Primary cause: A/C Failure
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: weapons
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: aircraft commander
Started Tour: 11/30/68
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - other aircrew
Length of service: 06
Location: Pleiku Province II Corps.
Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Non-hostile - died of other causes
married male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Relgion: Methodist (Evangelical United Brethren)
The following information is secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: non-battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: warrant officer
This record was last updated on 07/28/94



Name: SP5 Gale Stewart Pritchard
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 09/14/69 while performing the duty of Crew Chief.
Age at death: 23.2
Date of Birth: 07/19/46
Home City: Littleton, CO
Service: regular component of the U.S. Army.
Unit: 189 AHC
Major organization: 1st Aviation Brigade
Service: U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 18W-085
Short Summary: Flying II Corps General's ship. Had mechanical catastrophic failure after dropping off General enroute to Camp Holloway.
Aircraft: UH-1H tail number 67-17316
SSN: 522543207
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 67N2F = UH-1 Helicopter Repairer
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: weapons
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: crew chief
Started Tour: 07/09/69
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - other aircrew
Length of service: 02
Location: Pleiku Province II Corps.
Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Non-hostile - died of other causes
married male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Relgion: Protestant - no denominational preference
The following information is secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: non-battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: enlisted personnel
This record was last updated on 07/24/94



Name: SP4 Thomas Eugene Champagne
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 09/14/69 while performing the duty of Gunner.
Age at death: 19.8
Date of Birth: 12/07/49
Home City: Springfield, MA
Service: regular component of the U.S. Army.
Unit: 189 AHC
Major organization: 1st Aviation Brigade
Service: U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 18W-081
Short Summary: Flying II Corps General's ship. Had mechanical catastrophic failure after dropping off General enroute to Camp Holloway.
Aircraft: UH-1H tail number 67-17316
SSN: 018362360
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 67N2F = UH-1 Helicopter Repairer
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: fire or burns
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: door gunner
Started Tour: 07/19/69
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - other aircrew
Length of service: 02
Location: Pleiku Province II Corps.
Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Non-hostile - died of other causes
married male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Relgion: Roman Catholic
The following information is secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: non-battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: enlisted personnel
This record was last updated on 07/28/94


The following is Goldbook information on US Army helicopter UH-1H tail number 67-17316
It is provided here as an ESTIMATE of the history of this helicopter and is not intended to be the final authority.
This helicopter was purchased by the US Army in 0368.
Please provide any additional information on this helicopter to the VHPA.

DATE  FLT HRS    UIC      UNIT          AREA          POST          COUNTRY
6803   0    0 W0Y6AA OS TO CONUS      ITR CONUS                   AVCOMITR
6804   0    0 3300   BELL HCPTR       BAILMENT   FT WORTH         AVCOM    
6805 100  100 WCDXAA 2D SIGNAL GRP    VIETNAM                     RVN     
6806  87  187 WCDXAA 2D SIGNAL GRP    VIETNAM                     RVN     
6807  65  252 WCDXAA 2D SIGNAL GRP    VIETNAM                     RVN     
6808  74  326 WCDXAA 2D SIGNAL GRP    VIETNAM                     RVN     
6809  60  386 WCDXAA 2D SIGNAL GRP    VIETNAM                     RVN     
6810  94  480 WCDXAA 119 AVN CO       VIETNAM                     RVN     
6811  79  559 WAYAAA 119 AVN CO       VIETNAM                     RVN     
6812  85  644 WAYAAA 119 AVN CO       VIETNAM                     RVN     
6901  84  728 WAYAAA 119 AVN CO       VIETNAM                     RVN     
6902  22  750 WAYAAA 119 AVN CO       VIETNAM                     RVN     
6903 129  879 WAYAAA 119 AVN CO       VIETNAM                     RVN     
6904  41  920 WAYAAA 119 AVN CO       VIETNAM                     RVN     
6905 101 1021 WAYAAA 119 AVN CO       VIETNAM                     RVN     
6906  94 1115 WAYAAA 119 AVN CO       VIETNAM                     RVN     
6907  40 1155 WDUVAA 189 ASLT HEL CO  VIETNAM                     RVN     
6908  53 1208 WDUVAA 189 ASLT HEL CO  VIETNAM                     RVN     
6909  19 1227 WC5CAA 572ND MI DET     VIETNAM                     RVN     


Please send additions or corrections to:

Gary Roush
43 Overbrook Road
Painted Post, NY 14870


Send comments and questions to the VHPA at ( webmaster@vhpa.org )

Printed from databases on: 04/02/99

Return to Main Index

Copyright © 1998 and 1999 Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association