Back Issues of Newsletter

The following excerpts are from the Fall/Winter 2002 DUSTOFFer Newsletter. The complete newsletter, and all the stories, is mailed to each DUSTOFF Association member. If you are not a member, become a member now and read the complete issue.

President's Message

Greetings, fellow DUSTOFFers. This has been a fast-paced year both in our Association and in our Army. With the threat of war with Iraq looming on the horizon, our DUSTOFF units remain at the ready to serve our fighting forces with dedicated support. Please keep our deployed servicemen and women in your prayers for their safety and health.

Plans for the 2003 reunion are well underway. Your executive council has worked hard to get the best deals possible at the Marriott NW here in San Antonio so our reunion will be a comfortable and fun time of meeting with comrades and their spouses.  MORE

Crewmember of the Year

On 8 April 2002 at 0625Z, a nine-line MEDEVAC request for 5 patients with injuries sustained from a grenade blast was received by the 50th Medical Company. At 0640Z the aircraft departed Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan. Approximately 40 minutes after take-off, contact was established with call-sign Playboy 90, who advised of enemy activity. After landing, SGT George Hildebrandt departed the aircraft to evaluate the patients, while SGT Forwood provided aircraft security.

While on the ground, SGT Hidebrandt and SGT Forwood reported hearing small arms fire from the right side of the aircraft.


Rescue of the Year

The crewmembers of the Rescue of the Year crew are Pilot in Command CPT Michael A. Stone, Co-Pilot CW2 Ezekial J. Coffman, Medic SGT Frank l. Caudill, Crew Chief SPC Jose Peru of the 57th Medical Company stationed at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. At approximately 0910Z on 27 July 2002, DUSTOFF operations received a 9-Line MEDEVAC request for numerous casualties located in the vicinity of Ab Khail. Elements of U.S. Special Forces, 1/505th PIR, and Afghan militia fighters were conducting a search of the village of Ab Khail. The search was intended to locate weapons in the village. The crews of DUSTOFF 36, Wings 11 (a Quick Reaction Force UH-60), and two escort AH-64s  (Widowmaker 23 and 26) were launched at 0920Z for pickup. MORE

The Early Years

DUSTOFFer Bobby Mock writes about the day Kelly went down.

On July 1, 1964, I was the one to get the message from the CO of the 121st. It’s strange now that these very short moments in our lives are still so clear. I was sitting in our little operations room in front of our hooch when he rushed in. His exact words were, “Kelly’s down.” Then he turned on his heels and ran out of the room. It was not until about a half hour later that the word came that Kelly had been killed.

I immediately got on the land line trying to get the operations shack at our headquarters to report the news. I even tried the radio. After about ten minutes of trying, I went through to the orderly room and found out that the whole group had gone to lunch. MORE

Heroic Pilots & Crews - Medevac

Greg Linscott, a member of the U.S. Army way back in the Vietnam War era, provided an eloquent thanks to an unknown crew he’d encountered in 1968.

Belated thanks to the pilots and crewmen who MEDEVAC-ed our dead and wounded out under withering enemy fire in late May 1968 in the Thien Phuoc Valley (Happy Valley), somewhere out west of Tam Ky.

My unit, D, 1/52, 198th Light Infantry Brigade was ambushed by an NVA unit in the early morning hours. Casualties piled up fas. Any approaching helicopter was pounded with enormous volumes of enemy fire, and all attempts to assist were driven away.

As the battle wore on, our situation became tenuous. Several fly-over ammo drops were successful, but we were desperate to get the wounded out so we could maneuver. MORE

DUSTOFF Memorial Paver Campaign

With a goal of raising just over $10,000, DUSTOFFers have adopted 76 of the over 250 names on our memorial boards and raised just over $3,200 (as of publication of The DUSTOFFer). The list of names was mailed to all Association members in the Hall of Fame ballot. The cost to adopt a paver is $40. Undesignated donations are also welcome. Send your adoption selection and donation to the Association’s mail box with your choice. Make your checks payable to DUSTOFF Association and write “Pavers” in the “For” block.


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