An American Hero
Tribute to Sky Soldier
Thank you for your service as a Helicopter Crewman. Today is Good Friday, and Passover begins tonight. Easter is coming up. Happy Easter. It is so important for us all to acknowledge the sacrifices of those like you who answered our nation's call. Please watch over America, it stills needs your strength, courage and faithfulness. Rest in peace with the angels.
Remembering An American Hero
As an American, I would like to thank you for your service and for your sacrifice made on behalf of our wonderful country. The youth of today could gain much by learning of heroes such as yourself, men and women whose courage and heart can never be questioned.
May God allow you to read this, and may He allow me to someday shake your hand when I get to Heaven to personally thank you. May he also allow my father to find you and shake your hand now to say thank you; for America, and for those who love you.
With respect, and the best salute a civilian can muster for you, Sir
Crash Information on U.S. Army helicopter UH-1D tail number 64-13744
Crew included CAPT Richard E. Newton (KIA), WO1 James L. Darcy (KIA), and SP4 Alger E. Durell Jr. (KIA). Passengers consisted of MSG Vicente Medina-Torres (KIA), SFC Henry E. Patenaude (KIA), SP5 Conrad E. Poole (KIA) and SP5 Richard M. Dykes (KIA). Crash caused by lift link failure causing transmission on aircraft to seize resulting in a crash during Operation Junction City. The trunion bearing on the rotating part of the swash plate came out in flight causing loss of control to one main rotor blade. Suspect trunion retaining bolts were improperly torqued, allowing the assembly to move in and out, wearing the bolt's shanks until there was no retaining shoulder. The aircraft fell from cruise altitude, killing all on board. Junction City was an 82-day military operation conducted by United States and Republic of Vietnam (RVN or South Vietnam) forces begun on 22 February 1967. It was the largest U.S. airborne operation since Operation Market Garden during World War II, the only major airborne operation of the Vietnam War, and one of the largest U.S. operations of the war. At the time of CAPT Newton’s death he was platoon leader of the second platoon of the 128th (Tomahawks) which was assigned to the 11th Aviation Battalion at Phu Loi, a part of the 12th Aviation Group. [Taken from vhpa.org]