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 Aircraft by type

B-52 Stratofortress
DRAFT LISTING

 

 

When compiling the listings that appear below it has not always been possible to give full details of the crew, their ranks.

Neither is it always clear whether the crew member remained in the aircraft,  egressed on the ground, ejected or bailed out.
 

I am indebted to Mike McGrath, USN ret. (former NAM POW) and Leo O'Toole, USAF ret. (former 28th Bomb Wing) who wrote to help me improve the accuracy of the listings.

The errors that I made are slowly being corrected, for example I had not differentiated that the Gunners on the B-52s bailed out using a conventional parachute escape and not an ejection seat.

 

Mike McGrath Wrote

Bailout:

B-52 D            The B-52D has upward ejection seats for the Pilot, Copilot, and Electronic Warfare Officer and downward ejection seats for the Navigator and Radar Navigator. In the B-52D the Gunner is in the tail of the aircraft. For bailout, the gunner jettisons the gun turret and “dives out” of the hole created when the gun turret was jettisoned.  Bailout order was Nav, EW Officer, CP, Extra Crewmembers, RN, and P.  If any topside seats failed or any extra crewmembers were on board (up to 10 crewmembers can be carried) the crewmember came down to bail out through the hole the Nav left.  The RN was there to assist.  The Pilot always went last. The Gunner bailed out as soon as the bailout command was given. In an uncontrolled bail out, it was every man for himself…as quickly as possible

 

B-52 G            The B-52G has upward ejection seats for the Pilot, Copilot, Electronic Warfare Officer and Gunner, and downward ejection seats for the Navigator and Radar Navigator. In the B-52G the Gunner sits in an ejection seat next to the EW Officer. Bailout order was Nav, Gunner, EW Officer, CP, Extra Crewmembers, RN, P.  If any topside seats failed or any extra crewmembers were on board (up to 10 crewmembers can be carried), the crew member(s) came down to bail out through the hole the Nav left.  The RN was there to assist.  The Pilot always went last.  In an uncontrolled bail out, it was every man for himself…as quickly as possible. 

Leo  Wrote

On all models of the B-52 up through the B-52F, the gunner rode in the tail of the aircraft, facing aft, and did not have an ejection seat. In order to bailout, he would jettison the entire turret leaving nothing but air in front of him. He could then just lean forward and fall clear of the aircraft. On the B-52G, the gunner and EWO sat side by side, facing aft in the main crew compartment. In this model the gunner did have an ejection seat. Also, there are a few instances where the ranks are in error. Of the normal six man crew, five were commissioned officers, and the gunner was an enlisted man. Whenever extra crewmembers were onboard, it would be difficult to determine rank after the fact. Usually, the extra crewmembers were Instructor Pilots, Navigators, and EWO’s. Occasionally, an enlisted person such as the aircraft crew chief, or a maintenance person might be onboard. As I look through the site from time to time, I will try to make some notes on specifics and send them to you.

In the Ellsworth crash info I sent, you will read that the fire department had to ram the aircraft with a fire truck to rescue the gunner. It was a B-52D, and with the fuselage laying on the ground, the turret would not separate from the rest of the aircraft. Ramming the turret with the truck was the only way they could get the gunner out. I’ll try to give you some better scans of the pictures of the crash as soon as I can.

I also might mention that whenever extra personnel were on board, their only means of egress in an emergency was to manually bailout through one of the lower deck hatches after the navigators ejected. If neither of the navigators ejected, the extra personnel on board were doomed! I’m pretty sure that was the reason that General Crumm was lost in the midair collision that occurred in July, 1967. Neither of the navigators survived in that aircraft, so they may not have initiated their ejection seats. Also, a manual bailout from one of these hatches was a little tricky, even when the aircraft was fairly stable. After a midair collision, all bets are off.

I’ll get back to you soon.

Respectfully,

Leo

 

Date Air Force A'cft Unit / Serial based crashed crew photo seat

   53‑0384

16th February 1956
USAF
B-52B 53‑0384 93 BW
Castle Air Force Base, Merced
Near Tracey  Sacramento, Ca. Starboard forward alternator failed in flight, culminating in an uncontrollable fire which caused aircraft to break up.
 
     
Major Edward L. Stefanski
aircraft commander
? killed
Major Michael Shay
co-pilot
? ejected
Major Albert K. Brown
instructor pilot
? killed
Col. Patrick D. Fleming
[Deputy Commander of 93rd BW]
[one reference suggests that he bailed out but chute caught fire]
killed
[A USN Ace from WW2]
       
Capt. James Fredrickson
navigator
? killed
Major Harold F. Korger
radar observer
? ejected
Major Billie M. Beardsley
radioman
? ejected
M/Sgt Williard Milo Lucy
tail gunner
? bailed-out
 

 

   53‑0393

16th September 1956
Also reported as having occurred on 17/9/56

USAF
B-52B 53‑0393
93rd Bomb Wing
Returning to base caught fie. Lost a wing in subsequent dive. Crashed near Highway 99, nine miles southeast of Madera, California
 
         

 
Major Benjamin R. Ostland
plane commander
survived
Capt. William J. Vetter
survived
Captain "Dick" G. Richardson
killed
Captain Leroy Campbell
killed
M.Sgt. John T. Brown
killed
T.Sgt. Raymond B. Riggs
killed
photo via Craig Riggs
T,Sgt. Harvey L. Fulbright
killed
FEEDBACK

The info on the B52 crash 53‑0393 has one mistake

Raymond B Briggs  should be Raymond B Riggs

He was my father
Thanks

Craig Riggs
in email 6th September 2011 (error amended 11th September 2011)

FEEDBACK

Madera Union High School when I observed a B-52 engulfed in flames and falling from the sky. I also observed what appeared to be several chutes open and at least 1 chute appeared to be on fire and descended rapidy. The plane descended at a comparatively medium rate and later a black plume of smoke appeared on the far horizon. The altitude of the plane was such that the flaming wreckage was observed for about 20 seconds +- before it disappeared from sight.

I immediately knew that it was a B-52 since Madera is not far south of Castle AFB in Atwater, CA and their airplanes were a regular part of the sky in our area.

I later observed the grape vinyard crash site and it was located approximately 200 yards East of Highway 99. The vinyard was quickly repaired and no crash evidence was observed after a few weeks. The Fresno Bee and the Madera Tribune papers reported that the plane was not carrying nuclear weapons.

I was 14 years old at the time, but I can still visualize the accident. I am 68 yrs old now.

Leland Graham Turner
in email 27th April 2011

 

 

   52‑8716

30th November 1956
USAF
B-52B 52‑8716 93rd Bombardment Wing at Castle Near Castle AFB, Ca. crashed and burned in a grain field soon after take‑off on night mission.      
 

pic

     
Capt. John A. Goddard, 39
aircraft commander
killed
Capt. Richard M. Wikstrom, 31
pilot
killed
[previously incorrect spelling of Wickstrom]
Capt. Leland Fulton Burch, 35
navigator
killed
Maj. Robert Louis Sherman, 34
ECM operator
killed
Capt. Jack Eugene Welch, 33
radar-bombardier
killed
         
Major Bryant Guernsey Gay, 38
electronic counter measure operator
killed
T/Sgt. William J. Maguire, 33
radio operator
killed
Capt. Nick Sam Koss, 37
radar-bombardier instructor
killed
Capt. Charles Warren Schweer, 36
ECM instructor
killed
T/Sgt. Gerald Everett Riley, 26
tail gunner
killed
 
Thanks to Sam Parker for additional information in email 4th November 2008

 

 
10th January 1957
USAF
B-52D 55‑0082  42 BW
Loring AFB
Limestone, Maine
Crashed in woodlands near Andover, New Brunswick,  ten miles from air base
                 
Captain Richard A. Jenkins
Aircraft Commander
Huron, Ohio
killed
1st Lt Joe L. Church
 Charlotte, N.C.
co-pilot
ejected
Lieut Charles Samuel Cole
Navigator
26
Basin, Wyoming
killed
T.Sgt. Ray A. Miller
Racine, Wis.
killed
Captain Marquid H. D. Myers
Tracy, Calif.
killed
Captain John McCune
 Hayward, Calif.
killed
Captain William C. Davidson
Stockton, Calif.
killed
missing presumed killed missing presumed killed

It is believed between 1 and 4 of the crew ejected but only one of the crew survived
 

FEEDBACK

I have another name of the January 10, 1957 B52 Bomber Crash in NB.

Lieut Charles Samuel Cole
Navigator
26 years old
Hometown: Basin, Wyoming
Married
in email 24th August 2008

 

 
            All Boeing Civilian Employees    
29th March 1957
Boeing
Boeing JB-52C 54‑2676 Boeing  Destroyed during Boeing test flight from Wichita, Ks. Aircraft experienced complete loss of AC electrical power due to defective constant speed drive during negative G conditions. Aircraft then broke up and crashed Ross B. Patrick
37
Pilot
Body found in fuselage
   
John W. McCort
32
Navigator
Body found in fuselage
   
Charles P. Craven
34
Co-pilot
ejected, struck by aircraft debris and killed.
   
Earl C. Reed
30
Technical Observer
ejected, taken to a hospital in Tulsa
   

FEEDBACK

".   .   .   .   My dad is Earl C. Reed. He survived the B-52 crash of March 29, 1957. Currently, after a 35 year career with Boeing Co.he is retired and living with my mom in Melbourne, Florida. He is 86 years old.

The crash happened just 4 days after my 9th birthday. But, I still vividly remember the phone call from the Sheriff's Department in Skitook, Oklahoma. The woman on the phone told me to get my mom right away and to tell her that Dad's plane crashed. But that he was OK. After that, I just heard my mom say "Oh Dear God" several times. I went over to my friend Kenney Thomkin's house. His dad, Capt. Thomkin called the base right away, But the Air Force had not yet heard of the crash, or at least it had not filtered down to Capt. Thomkin's crew yet. I remember that I was afraid he thought I was lying. But, he said "no", that he didn't believe I would make up a story like that.

Dad has told me several times that after he ordered everyone out of the plane, the ejection system failed. That he had to "beat the hatch open with the back of the fire extinguisher and jump". He said that he thought Ross Patrick's and John McCort's ejection systems also failed. Dad added that Chuck Craven did eject, but, was hit by a piece of the tail section. When he hit the ground, his parachute dragged him quite a ways. Dad said two 15 year old boys apparently collapsed the chute. As I recall, Mr. Craven survived to the hospital with traumatic head injuries and passed away during or just after surgery the next day.

Dad always complained that he landed in the only tree in the area. As he was descending, he tried pulling on the parachute "strings" - like he saw in the old Ripcord TV show - to guide his landing. But, when he pulled on the "strings' the chute would only descend faster. So, he just let them alone. Later, the folks at Boeing told him that since his was an emergency chute, the panels weren't cut such that he could control direction.

Someone stole his helmet - he wanted it back. But we've never seen it or heard what happened to it. Dad does have his parachute.

Lastly, I have never seen anyone with such blood shot eyes after the accident. It took a good month for them to clear up.

Dr. Donald M. Reed, Ph.D.
in email 14th October 2012

 

 
 

 

 
6th November 1957
USAF
B-52B 53‑0382 330th Bomb Squadron
93 Bomb Wing
Crashed on landing at Castle AFB, Ca. Landing gear lever latch failed during touch and‑go landing, resulting in gear retracting while still on runway      
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vincent B. Bennett
co-pilot

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My father, , was the co-pilot of the B52 that crashed on Nov 6, 1957. They were doing 'touch and goes' when the nose landing gear collapsed. My dad said it was not abrupt and at first they thought they tires had gone flat. Everybody got out alive though the pilot and my dad were injured. They didn't have time to remove their parachutes so when they slid down the side of the aircraft the weight of the chutes pulled them back. The pilot broke his back. My dad's heel was crushed like an egg. He found out years later that he had a hairline fracture in his back too.

He tells of being in the hospital with a fireman from the base. The young kid (I think he was 19) was moving into the fire with a foam hose when something exploded covering him in flames. Fortunately he was knocked over and rolled in the firefighting foam. The Airman looked at my father and said something about how he thought my dad was crazy to fly. My dad replied that he wasn't the one running into a fire.

My dad also told me that he was trying to get away, but couldn't walk because of his broken heel. He thought about all the stories he had heard of injured people who could still walk. He took one step and fell flat on his face. Someone on the ground helped him get away from the burning aircraft.

Evidently the accident was caused by lack of maintenance on the nose gear. Some part that was supposed to be lubricated, but was very hard to get to had not been lubricated and failed. My father will be 87 this year and is still living. He has had back pain ever since the accident.  On the humorous side, my father was wearing his wedding ring around his neck on a chain. He lost it in the accident. His crew mates all swore to my mother that they saw him stop and throw the ring into the fire. He never replaced the ring or his wife. They live in Michigan now. If you want more information I'm sure he'd be happy to provide it.

I was 8 years old and remember seeing the black smoke cloud from Castle AFB. We lived in Atwater at the time.

My best,

Vincent B. Bennett Jr.
in email 26th May 2013
 

 

 

 

 
Thursday
12th December 1957
16:02 est

USAF
B-52D 56‑0597 92 BW
Fairchild AFB, Wa.
near Spokane, Washington
Crashed at Fairchild AFB, Wa. Incorrect wiring of stabiliser trim switch resulted in  loss of control and caused aircraft to crash at end of runway Col. Clarence A Neeley
42
CO 92nd Bomb Wing
killed
   
Captain Herbert H. Spiller
32
killed
   
Captain Douglas F. Schwartz
36
killed
   
Captain Douglas E. Gray
33
killed
   
1st Lieutenant James D. Mann
34
killed
   
Major Ralph R. Alworth
38
killed
   
Captain Thomas N. Peebles
34
killed
   
1st Lieutenant Jack J. Vainisi
26
killed
   
Sgt. Gene L. Graye
tail gunner survived
   
 

 

 
11th February 1958
USAF
B-52D 56‑0610 77th BS (H)
28th BW
Ellsworth Air Force Base
South Dakota
Crashed short of runway at Ellsworth AFB, SD. Fuel pump screen iced over, leading to total power loss on final approach two crew and three on ground killed
               
Captain Melvin J. Rudd
St. Anthony, Idaho
Plane Captain
survived
Sgt. Richard Gilbert
Painesville, Ohio
survived
Captain Verle Rusk
navigator
survived
injured
1st Lt. Leonard R. Scotty
electronic countermeasures officer
survived
injured
ground crew member
survived
injured
Technical Sergeant Oscar Orrs
Gunner
survived
injured
Capt. John O'Connell Jr.
Chattangooga, Tennessee
radar bombardier
killed

Captain O'Connell had survived a B-36 crash at Denver in 1956

 

1st Lt. Kenneth B. Kaeppler
Radar Bombardier
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
gunner
killed

The article also mentions the 11 Feb 1958 crash at Ellsworth. Just adding to your info, Kenneth Kaipler was the Radar Navigator and John O’Connell was the navigator. The aircraft crashed short of the southeast runway and “demolished a small building containing equipment for the instrument landing approach system”. Those killed were A1C Ronald R. Mitchell, A1C James E. Ferrell and Mr. Glen M. Allen (civilian). It mentions six others aboard the airplane were injured as well but gave no details. . .

Jay
in email 9th February 2010

 

   55‑0102

26/6/58
USAF
B-52D 55‑0102 42 BW Destroyed by ground fire at Loring AFB, Me      
 

 

   55-0093

29th July 1958
USAF
B-52D 55‑0093 42 BW
Loring AFB
Maine
Crashed into farmer's field three miles south of Loring AFB, Me. Flew into ground in bad weather      
             

 
Major Kirkwood G, Myers
35
Roanoke VA
Crew Comander
Lt Lane L Kittle
24
Oaklawn IL. 
Copilot
Lt Leonard M Corcaro
Niagra Falls NY
Sgt Oran C Reily
32
Corpus Christi Tx
Lt Robert F Testerman
25
Aubrey TX
Lt Leslie N Martin Jr
27
Montgomery AL
Lt James F Thompson
23
Hardy NE
Major Milo C. Johnson
36
Leavenworth KS
Instructor Navigator

killed
[photo  from his daughter Judith Johnson Paykoc]
Maj. Moody E. Denton
Instructor pilot
suffered cuts and burns
survived
[this was his second crash]
                 

 

 
Monday 8th September 1958
1730 hrs (5:30 PM) Pacific Time

USAF
B-52D 56‑0661 92 BW

Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane, Washington

Crashed three miles north‑east of Fairchild AFB, Wa. Mid‑air collision  about 1,000' above the eastern approach to the runway.  followed by an explosion and fire      

USAF
B-52D 56‑0681    
Two B-52 jet bombers collided about 1500 feet above a busy cross-State Washington highway.
   
 
Crews

All notes from compiled from many different news sources - some details conflict

16 crew died as a result of the collision.

8 parachutes were observed, but 7 were on fire

A tailgunner  bailed-out uninjured
(sole survivor of B-52 crash in July or August 1958)

weapons officer survived by ejecting

  12 crew died in the collision. 4 ejected /bailed-out one dying later.

At present it has not been possible to match the crews to the aircraft - help appreciated

 
Captain Roy L. George
Cisco, Texas
killed
Captain Homer W. Crump
Monterrey, California
killed
Major T. W. Held
Fairchild AFB
killed
S/Sgt Aubrey Moore
Birmingham, Alabama
killed
1st Lieutenant Reggie C. Frazier
Spokane
killed
1st Lieutenant Gerald M. Limburg
killed
 
Major Donald R. Staples
Turner, Mont.
killed
1st Lieutenant John Cork
Page City, Kansas
killed
Lieutenant Colonel Andrew B. Creo
327th BW Commander
Fairchild AFB
killed
S/Sgt David G. Archer
Spokane
killed
Captain Russell H. Snow
San Antonio, Texas
killed
1st Lieutenant John R. Black
killed
   
Sgt. Lowell Younger
Stockton
Tail Gunner
bailed-out
Captain David W. Birdsell
Spokane
ejected
badly injured
2nd Lieutenant Walter N. McGuire
Spokane
ejected
Captain Ernest C. Marker
ejected
badly injured (burned)
died later in hospital
                 
 

 

 
17th September 1958
USAF
B-52D 55‑0065 42 BW
Loring AFB
Limestone, Maine
Crashed on the August Kahl farm, ten miles south of St Paul, Minnesota. Broke apart in the air Captain Wm G Horstman
killed
pilot  
Capt. Richard J. Cantwell
navigator
killed
   
Major Surles O. Gillespie Jr
killed
   
Lt. William F. Huskey
killed
   
Tech. Sgt. Leon R. Lew
killed
   
Capt. James D. Taylor
instructor
killed
   
 Captain Bernard D Lanois
instructor
killed
   
Captain Jack Douglas Craft
 Purvis MS
Survived
bailed out
   
 
FEEDBACK

This crash you have listed crashed into my grandparents farm in Minnesota not Wisconsin. The following is a list off the memorial of the crew members
 
Captain Wm G Horstman, pilot, Kansas City , MO
Captain Richard J Cantwell, navigator, Phoenix, AZ
Major S.O. Gillespie, Jr radar observer Atlanta CA
1st Lt Wm F Huskey, engineer, Norman OK
T/sgt Leon R Lew, tail gunner Skokie IL
Captain James D Taylor, instructor, Dixon KY
Captain Bernard D Lanois, instructor, San Diego, Ca
 
only survivor Captain Jack D Craft, Purvis, MS

in email 2nd March 2009
 

                 

 

 
Tuesday 9th December 1958
23:45

USAF
Boeing B-52E Stratofortress 56‑0633
11 BW
Altus AFB
Oklahoma
Routine night training mission. Crashed at Altus AFB, Ok. The aircraft was on a routine mission, aircraft made a GCA approach, requested climb to altitude for another jet penetration, problems with stabilizer trim during overshoot. Explosion 4 miles from the base
 
     
Major Byard F. Baker
39
Azle, Texas
pilot
ejected
Capt. Melvin Eckstein
33
Los Angeles
killed
Maj. Willis E. Brady
39
Pensacola
killed
1st Lt. Carl D. Mackall
27
Sewickley, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania
killed
1st Lt. Doyle Alexander Salley
27
Lynwood, California
killed
         
S.Sgt. Thomas Lowry
Tampa
crewmember gunner
killed
S.Sgt. Clarence R. Leger
Springfield
Mass.
killed
Tech. Sgt Norman L. Kohlmeyer
Shilling AFB, Kansas
gunner instructor
killed
S.Sgt. Harold J. Funnell
[also seen as Funnel]
passenger??
Shilling AFB, Kansas
killed
                 

 

                 
29/ 1 /59
USAF
B-52B 53‑0371  93 BW Crashed at Castle AFB, Ca. Hapless take‑off aborted at high speed.      
                 

 

                 
23rd June 1959
USAF
B-52D 56‑0591 Boeing Aircraft Company, Seattle Conducting tests for the USAF.

Crashed in Ochoca National Forest, Burns and Walla Walla Wash, Or. Horizontal stabiliser suffered turbulence‑induced failure at low‑level

One report states lost in accident at Larson AFB, Wa (aircraft was probably flying from there).

 
         
Lewis E. Moore
44
Kirkland, Wash
pilot
Killed
Joseph Q. Keller
Bellevue, Wash
co-pilot
Killed
Gerald Green
37
Kent, Wash
navigator
Killed
Charles K. McDaniel
29
flight engineer
Killed
Neil Johnson
29
Seattle
flight engineer
killed

 

                 
10th August 1959
USAF
B-52C 54‑2682  99 BW
Westover AFB
Chicopee, Mass
Attempting to make an emergency landing at Goose Bay, the only landing option not affected by foggy weather conditions. Crashed before it could make the landing,  into Spruce Swamp Fremont , 20 miles east of New Hampton, NH. Nose radome failed in flight. All eight crewmen parachuted to safety landing in Candia
  
               
Capt. George E. Kusch
ejected
SSgt Arnold Newman
27
Tail Gunner
ejected OK
Captain Joseph L. Bivins
38
passenger
ejected OK
Captain Thaddeus I. Cheate
31
Navigator
ejected OK
Captain Donald Bell
38
Radar Observer
ejected OK
Captain Wayne G. Vogt
33
passenger
ejected OK
1st Lt. Joseph L. Hunt
ejected OK
recovered two hours later
TSgt Merril R. Hethorn
34
ejected OK
recovered two hours later
  

 

15th October 1959
USAF
 B-52F 57‑0036 4228 SW
Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi
It was night, weather was clear, and there was no turbulence. Shortly after the B-52 began refueling from the KC-135, the two aircraft collided. Mid‑air collision with KC‑135A during airborne alert duty 32,000 feet Hardinsberg, Kentucky instructor pilot Major Milton E. Chatham ejected    
Capt. William G. Gutshall, Aircraft Commander ejected    
Lieut. Gino Fugazzi
electronic warfare officer ejected
   
Capt. James W. Strother, Radar Navigator, suffered minor injuries from the ejection/bailout    
First Lt. Donald Arger, co-pilot failed to leave the B-52    
First Lt. John W. Mosby, navigator failed to leave the B-52    
 Capt Lyle P. Burgess Instructor Navigator,  failed to leave the B-52    
 T. Sgt Howard L. Nelms, Tail Gunner, failed to leave the B-52    
  Comments on 10/15/1959 B-52F  s/n 57-036 collision with KC-135A s/n 57-1513

Four survivors, all from B-52F in order of ejection/bailout;

Major Milton E. Chatham. Instructor Pilot

Capt. William G. Gutshall, Aircraft Commander

Capt. James W. Strother, Radar Navigator, suffered minor injuries from the ejection/bailout

First Lt. Gino Fugazzi, Electronic Warfare Officer

Lower deck Navigator's ejection seat would not work;

Upper deck Electronic Warfare ejection seat had a delay in activation

First Lt. Donald Arger, Co-Pilot;  First Lt. John W. Mosby, Navigator; Capt Lyle P. Burgess Instructor Navigator, T. Sgt Howard L. Nelms, Tail Gunner fail to eject/bailout.

KC-135A Crew

 Major Robert H. Imhoff, Aircraft Commander; First Lt. William E. Epling, Co-Pilot,

First Lt. Harold E. Helmick, Navigator, were found in the forward fuselage section.

S. Sgt Paul E. Thomasson, Boom Operator was found short of KC-135 main impact point

Sincerely,

Scott. A. Helmick
son of First Lt. Harold E. Helmick

 

 

 

 
1st February 1960
night

USAF
B-52G 58‑0180 72 BW
Ramey AFB
Incorrect trim setting during touch‑and‑go approach. Crashed Ramey AFB, near Aguadilla, PR
 
             
Col. Samuel G. Porterfield
[vice-commander 72 BW]
pilot
killed
Lieut. Col. Keith M. Garrison
killed
Capt Nabor Mendez Pelegrina
killed
1/Lieut. George G. Fetterer
killed
2/Lieut. Kent W. Slaughter
killed
Capt. Robert E. Howell
killed
M/Sgt William R. Hill
killed

 

 
1 /4/60
USAF
B-52D 56‑0607 92 BW Burned out on runway at Fairchild AFB, Wa. Upper wing structure failed.      
 

 

 
9th December 1960
USAF
B-52D 55‑0114 99 BW
Westover AFB
Crashed near Barre, Vermont      
 
Major Henry Luscomb
flight instructor
ejected*
Capt William T. Combs
pilot 
ejected*
1st Lt James Saravo
co pilot
ejected*
Capt Ronald D. Little
navigator ejected while aircraft descending to low­ level route*
1st Lt George M. Davis
electronic warfare officer
ejected
Staff Sgt Pierre "Pete" Maheux
gunner
ejected
died
Remains found 4th July 1961
 Major Carl E. Keyes
radar operator
ejected*
Airman 1st Class Charles E. Morris
EWO
ejected
[photo taken in 2008  via his daughter]

Thanks to Brian Lindner for providing photos*.

FEEDBACK

Hello, I was sent a link to the site on B-52 crashes. My father was in the Dec 9, 1960 crash. He was the only one to die in the crash. His name is misspelled, it should read Pierre “Pete” Maheux not Maheaux. Also I read a Feedback from Marcy Morris asking for a correction to the spelling of her father’s name. I remember visiting the Morris family at our house and theirs after the crash (I was about 5 or 6 years old). I was hoping you could give me Marcy Morris’s email address and/or forward mine to her

Thanks

Leo Maheux

PS I’ve attached a photo of my dad for use on the site
in email 9th November 2009
entry corrected 11th November 2009

FEEDBACK

The B 52 started its flight in  Springfield Mass at Westover AFB and did what they called the watertown bomb run in mid NY. They travelled as far north as the St. Lawrence seaway passing over Massena NY. During the night the bomber rolled over and lost altitude.
 The navigator thinking she was breaking up ejected without direction from the pilot.
 When he did there was a loud noise and the pilot thinking she was breaking up ordered the crew to eject.
 The plane had righted itself and the instructor on board yelled to the pilot and co pilot to stay with the bird.
 In the end the instructor was the only one left so he ejected as well. The plane continued to fly on making large up and down spirals and crashed in Plainfield Vermont 50 miles from where the crew left her.

All survived,  except for  Sgt Maheux , they were injured and had frost bite due to cold and snow in the area of the Adirondac Mountains.
 Maheaux was found seven months later and either the chute hadn't opened or he landed on a rock killing him instantly.
 
 The plane crashed and burned in an open field making a crater 350' long, 30' deep and 30' wide.
 There were no deaths or injuries on the ground.

Bill Lyon
in emails April 2008

FEEDBACK

I was reading your site on the B-52 crashes and I found my Dad's.
Dec 9, 1960. He was stationed at Westover Air Force base
His name is on the list of ejectors. Charles E Morris. His name is mis-spelled to Morse.
My Dad is 80 yrs old now and I showed him what someone had submitted in April 08 re: the crash. He said, yep that about sums it up.
Could you please change his name to Morris?
Thank you,
Marcy Morris
in email 19th August 2008
[web entry corrected on 20th August 2008]

 
                 

 

                 
15th December 1960
USAF
B-52D 55‑0098 327th Bombardment Squadron
4170th Strategic Wing
Larson Air Force Base, Moses Lake
Crashed at Larson AFB, Wa. Aircraft had earlier collided, over Mullan Pass, Idaho, with KC-135 tanker from 22nd Air Refueling Squadron,  92nd Bomb Wing, Fairchild during air‑to air refuelling. Starboard wing failed and aircraft caught fire during landing roll. Runway damaged. The KC-135's refueling probe had pierced the B-52's wing over Montana Reported as 10 crew on board all OK

 

KC-135 landed at Fairchild AFB

   
 
         
Captain Clifford L. Ponsness
Pilot
Major Leonard Carmell
Radar Officer
Major David A. Eum
Electronics
Captain Glenn M. Bird
Navigator
Captain Thomas J. Campbell
Instructor Pilot
         
Major Wayne D. Waller
 
1st Lt Basil L. Ciriello
Instructor Navigator
Captain Robert W. Covarrubials
Staff Navigator
Captain William C. Lane
Extra Pilot
MSgt Henry W. Olschner
31
Tail Gunner
injured
 
KC-135 Tanker Crew
Captain Charles L. Beuechele
Pilot
1st Lieutenant Eugene A. J. Hendricks
Pilot
1st Lt John L. Hall
Navigator
SSgt Martin W. Gunder
Boom Operator
       
Captain Warren H. Williams
Instructor Navigator
Captain Jack W. R. Peters
Instructor Navigator
TSgt Charles E. Cade
Boom Operator
 

 

 
19th January 1961
USAF
B-52B
call sign, FELON 22
53‑0390 334th Bomb Squadron, 95 BW
Biggs Air Force Base, El Paso, Texas
Turbulence‑induced structural failure at high level,  just north of Monticello, Ut. Capt. John P. Marsh
(pilot)
   
1Lt. Thomas A. Stout
(co-pilot) bail-out or ejection
   
Capt. Harold S. Bonneville
(radar navigator)
   
2Lt. Jerome R. Calvert
(navigator) bail-out or ejection
   
1Lt. Ivan G. Petty
(electronic warfare officer)
   
Tsgt. David A. Forsythe
(gunner)
   
Ssgt. Lionel A. Terry
(flight engineer)
had parachuted to safety, but died of exposure
   
                               see also http://www.canyoncountryzephyr.com/april-may2004/felon22.htm
                 

 

                 
24th January 1961
USAF
B-52G 58‑0187 4241 SW Fatigue failure of starboard wing after fuel leak at high altitude. Loss of control resulted when flaps selected during ensuing emergency approach to Seymour Johnson AFB Goldsboro, North Carolina:      
 
       
Maj. Walter S. Tulloch
[also seen as Walter F. Tulloch]
Pilot
Ejected
Minor injuries
Capt. Richard W. Hardin
Co-pilot
Ejected
Minor injuries

Maj. Eugene Shelton
Radar Navigator
Ejected, Fatal

Capt. Paul E. Brown
Navigator
Ejected
Minor injuries
       
1/Lt William H. Wilson
EWO
Ejected
Major injuries
Maj. Eugene H. Richards
Instructor
EWO
bailed out, Fatal
1/Lt Adam C. Mattocks
3rd Pilot
used parachute
Minor injuries
TSgt Francis R. Barnish
Gunner
Ejected
did not use parachute, Fatal
 

Additional details provided by Ed Mirmak, Westminster CA
in emails during February 2009

                 

 

 

 
14th March 1961
approximately 1803Z,

USAF
B-52F 57‑0166 4134 SW
Mather AFB
Near Yuba City, Ca. Cabin pressurisation failed, causing descent, with increased fuel  consumption leading to fuel exhaustion before rendezvous with tanker. Aircraft was  then abandoned by crew. Was engaged on airborne alert duty. ? ejected    
? ejected    
? ejected    
? ejected    
All eight survived, at least 4 ejected, two survivors taken to Fremont Hospital, Yuba City, three helicoptered to Beale AFB hospital,  two suffered broken legs.
MORE DETAILS APPRECIATED
 
       
Maj. Raymond V. Clay
Pilot
bailed out eight at 4000 feet
1st Lt Robert Bigham
Co-pilot
bailed out six
Capt William Hart
RN
bailed out seventh
Maj. Morris Levy
N
bailed out
ffrst at 7000 feet
       
TSgt Alexander Baltikauskas
EWO
bailed out fourth
Capt Joseph Ethier
3rd pilot
bailed out third
 
Capt Robert Dobson
2nd navigator
bailed out
second
TSgt Stephen Oarlock
Gunner
bailed out the navigator hatch
bailed out fifth
 

Additional details provided by Ed Mirmak, Westminster CA
in emails during February 2009

FEEDBACK

Re. the 14 MAR 61 crash of B-52F 57-0166, the aircraft was assigned to the 4134th Strategic Wing at Mather AFB, not Beale AFB.  I was stationed at Beale at the time.  The rest of the facts appear to be correct.  There was only one fatality and it was a Beale AFB fireman who was hit and killed by a motorist passing by the crash site.

Cheers,
Wes Bender
(former Staff Sergeant, USAF)
 

 

 

  http://www.slide.com/s/MpzAlkpY4T9l3ViGx25PfxXfxjZXKO0z
30th March 1961
USAF
B-52G 59‑2576 4038 SW Near Lexington, NC. Loss of control for unknown reason . Aircraft had logged 233 hours when accident occurred. Capt. William Donald McCullen
Commander & pilot
   
Capt. William Woody Farmer
co-pilot
   
Capt. Robert Marsh Morgenroth
Radar Navigator
   
Captain George William Beale
Observer
   
S.Sgt.James Howard Fults
Instructor Gunner
   
Airman 1sr Class Robert Nathaniel Gaskey
Student Gunner
   
Major Wilbur Fred Minnich
Navigator
Survived
   
1st Lt. Glen Charles Farnham
EWO
survived
   

 

                 
7th April 1961
USAF
B-52B "Ciudad Juarez" 53‑0380
"Ciudad Juarez"
95 BW
Biggs AFB, Texas
Shot down by  F‑100 of the 188th TFS, New Mexico ANG when Firing circuit electrical fault caused inadvertent launch of missile. AIM‑9 Sidewinder Wreckage fell to earth on Mount Taylor, NM.  
       
Capt. Donald C. Blodgett (Aircraft Commander) Capt. Ray C. Obel
(Co-pilot)
ejected at 30,000ft using his bail-out oxygen bottle to survive as a 150kt jetstream carried him much further down the mountain. He was found two days later with a fractured back
Capt. Peter J. Gineris
killed (Navigator)
Capt. Stephen Carter(Bombardier)
     
Capt. George D. Jackson
(ECM)
2nd Lt. Glenn Bair
(ECM Student)killed
 

[photo via Bill Erler, LtCol USAF Retired]

S/Sgt. Ray A. Singleton (Gunner) S/Sgt. Manuel L. Mieras(Maintenance Controller)
(lost his legs due to accident injuries)
FEEDBACK

Concerning the shootdown of B-52B "Cuidad Juarez" on April 7,1961 by an ANG F-100, I have attached a picture of Lt. Glenn V. Bair who was killed in that crash.  Glenn was my best friend and roommate during navigator training at Harlingen AFB, TX in late 1959, and the picture is from the Harlingen yearbook.  Since Glenn was in class 59-17N and was commissioned in October, 1959,  he would likely have been a 1st Lt upon his tragic death in April, 1961.

Bill Erler
LtCol USAF Retired
in email 4th February 2009

   

 

14/ 10/61

or

15/ 10/61


USAF
Boeing B-52G Stratofortress 58‑0196
Pogo 22
4241 SW
SAC
Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro, N.C
Off Newfoundland coast into Atlantic Ocean. Cause of loss not determined. Part of a mock attack force during "Sky Shield II" exercise Crew missing presumed lost    
 
               
Captain Roland C. Starke Jr.
Aircraft Captain
1st Lieutenant Kenneth L. Payne
Pilot
Captain Paul D. Fellows Jr.
Radar Navigator
Lieutenant Richard T. Wiksel
Navigator
Lieutenant Dean A. Upp
EWO
Staff Sergeant Helmut Christ
Gunner
Airman 1st Class Francis B. Jones
Maintenance Specialist
Lieutenant Gary B. Sprague
Navigator
 
                 

 

Date Air Force A'cft Unit / Serial based crashed crew photo seat
Friday 23rd February 1962
USAF
Boeing B-52 Stratofortress   246th Bomb Squadron, 99th Bomb Wing
Westover AFB
One crewmember lost due to hatch malfunction      
                 
Major Earl R. Cairl
at 31,000ft was lost from aircraft
Lieutenant William E, Gillchrist
co-pilot
Lieutenant Leonard J. Ratzman
Navigator
           
In February, 1962, I was a navigator on a B52 that took off from Westover AFB on a "Chrome Dome" mission. About 10 to 11 hours after takeoff (near Thule AFB), a malfunctioning hatch gave way and our A/C commander, Major Earl Cairl was killed when the result of the rapid decompression sucked him out at altitude without a parachute through the hatch opening
   

 

Date Air Force A'cft Unit / Serial based crashed
Thursday 24th January 1963
3 p.m.

USAF
Boeing B-52C Stratofortress 53‑0406 99 BW SAC
Westover Air Force Base, Massachusetts
Crashed into mountain after stabilizer shaft broke during low level exercise near Elephant Mountain Greenville, Maine USA. Severe cold and snow hampered rescue efforts
 
     
pilot
Lt. Col. Dante E. Bulli
40
Cherry, Illinois
ejected
landed in tree - broke ankle
instructor-pilot,
co-pilot
Maj. Robert J. Morrison

36
Portland, Oregon
ejected

killed hitting tree on descent
navigator Capt. Gerald J. Adler
31
Houston, Texas
ejected
 fractured skull  and three ribs were broken.
Lt. Col. Joe R. Simpson, Jr
Instructor Pilot
42
Jackson, Mississippi
killed
Maj. William W. Gabriel
Instructor Navigator
45
Indianapolis, Ind
killed
Maj. Robert J. Hill Jr
Radar Navigator
37
Joplin, Mo
killed
Capt. Herbert L. Hansen
Navigator
42
Rapid City, SD
killed
T-Sgt. Michael F. O'Keffe
Gunner
26
Bronx, NY
killed
Capt, Charles G. Leuchter
Radar Navigator
32
Denver, Colorado
killed
  LINK
Dante E Bulli 14325 Eagle Run Dr #606, Omaha, NE 68164
Monday
30th January 1963
shortly after 05:00

USAF
B‑52E 57‑0018 6 BW
Walker AFB
tail snapped off in turbulence Sangre de Christo mountains, 10 miles northwest of Mora, NM, USA Lt. Col. Donald Hayes
Aircraft Commander
ejected OK
   
Major Thomas J. McBride
co-pilot
ejected OK
   
Major Emil Goldbeck
navigator
ejected OK
   
Lt.Col. Nicholas
Horangic
radar operator
ejected OK
   
Major George Szabo
systems operator
killed
   
M.Sgt. Harvey Burl Dean
[??]
Tail Gunner
killed
   

 

                 
19/ 11 /63
or
21 / 11 /63.

USAF
B-52E 56‑0655 6 BW Destroyed by fire during maintenance at Walker AFB, NM      
 

 

                 
23rd December 1963
USAF
B-52F 57‑0043 454 BW
SAC
Columbus
Crashed ‑ minutes after take-off near Aberdeen, Mississippi
Crew E-09
Maj. Carl M. Funk
killed
Capt. Elbert J. Andoe
Co-pilot
killed
1st Lt. Anthony J. Linzi
Navigator
killed
Capt Fred R. Curtis
Radar Navigator
killed
Capt. Harry E. Bell
Instructor Navigator
killed
 
1st Lt. Liam Rafferty
EWO
killed
M.Sgt Lacy Potter
tail gunner
killed
1st Lt Harry L. Grebe
navigator
killed
2nd Lt. Leonard J. LeRose
co-pilot
killed
 
FEEDBACK

In reference to the B-52F which crashed near Columbus, MS on December 23, 1963. There were no ejections! I was stationed at the base at the time and participated in the recovery efforts. The belief is that maintenance had been performed on the flight attitude position indicator and the check out was one of the objectives of the flight. Rumor was that the  indicator mal-functioned shortly after takeoff, and the A/C (Funk) received incorrect flight attitude reading. There was a heavy fog at the time and no chance for visual ground orientation.

Former Airman 1/c Charles M. Neal, Jr.
454th AMMS (1963-64)
in email 27th November 2008

FEEDBACK

 

Regarding the B-52 crash northwest of Columbus AFB, MS on Dec. 23, 1963. I was a 1st Lieutenant (soon to be Captain) B-52 Electronic Warfare Officer at Columbus AFB from April 1961 thru Dec. 1966. At the time of the crash I was on Christmas leave visiting my family in Pittsburgh with my wife and 10 ½ month old son. When we returned to Columbus, I was able to obtain a copy of the base paper with the memorial to the crew that was lost. I believe that it was later confirmed that the attitude indicator failed, and by following it, put the aircraft in a slow, turning 1G roll. Damage to trees caused by the horizontal and vertical stabilizers at the crash site showed that the aircraft was upside down at impact. Flying in heavy fog, they never had any visual reference to the ground. When I came across your site recently, I felt I had to locate the paper so that I could submit it to you for inclusion in their honor. They were a great group of people who gave their lives for their country.

          

 

 

".   .   .    I have saved other articles that I need to scan into my computer on other B-52 crashes that are on your website. Specifically, the mid-air where General Crumm was lost and my old friend Toki Endo from Columbus AFB, MS managed to survive, and also the crash at Da Nang where I lost one of my best friends, also from Columbus AFB, MS, Anthony Kent “Tony” Johnson. That particular aircraft had some serious hydraulic problems and they were making an emergency “flaps up” landing at Da Nang. That required a higher than normal speed approach, and I believe they landed long, failed to stop before running out of runway, and ran into the mine field off the end. I was stationed at Ellsworth AFB, SD at the time of this accident, and learned about it by word of mouth. I heard that the only survivor was the tail gunner."

 

     Leo O’Toole

        Former Captain
        454th Bomb Wing
        in emails from 6th September 2011

 

 

Monday
13th January 1964

USAF
B-52D 55‑0060
Buzz One Four
484 BW
Strategic Air Command
Turner Air Force Base
Excessive turbulence resulted in structural failure.
Cumberland,
northwestern Maryland
     
Maj. Thomas W. "Tom" McCormick
[pilot]
ejected - survived - found Monday
Capt. Parker Caswell  "Mack" Peedin
[co-pilot]
ejected -survived - found Tuesday
Major Robert L. Payne
ejected
found dead
died of exposure
Major Robert L. Townley
[bombardier]
found dead in aircraft
Melvin Wooten
[tail gunner] 

bailed-out
found dead
Acknowledgements

Thanks to Lori Ann Haire web author of the Salisbury, Pennsylvania Historical Web Site that contains a detailed account of the loss for her help with extra information on this B-52 crash

 

                 
Friday 7/2/64
19:00

USAF
RB-52B 52‑0009 93 BW
Castle AFB
Merced, California
Crashed at near Tranquility, west of San Joaquin, Fresno due to fire in hydraulic system 7 crew ejected
landed within a 20 mile radius
   
 
             
Major Earl A Tucher
Sacramento
Pilot
ejected
Captain Delmore L. Fessenden
AC
ejected
Major Francisco Bautista
Navigator
ejected
Colonel Paul R. Von Ins
March AFB
ejected
Lieutenant Colonel Frederick W. Fowler
ejected
Lt. David W. Martin
Sunnyvale, California
ejected
M.Sgt Archie L. Gainey
bailed out
                 
 

My Father:

Major Francisco Bautista, USAF (RET), (Navigator) Veteran WWII - 65 Missions, Korea, Vietnam

Stationed at Castle Air Force Base, Atwater, California.

Ejected from a burning B-52, on 05 Feb. 1964. Major Bautista (Navigator) ejected at 28,000' feet (night mission). Bautista suffered a broken arm upon ejection, hospitalized with injuries - 'Survived'.

Pilot set aircraft on a heading to open sea, however the bomber crashed in a farmers field in the area of Tranquility, California.


Thank You,

Sincerely,

Andrea Bautista-Duke
in email 9th October 2011 (added same date)

 

    55‑0108

10th November 1964
USAF
B-52D 55‑0108 462 SAW
Larson Air Force base
Engaged on night low‑level mission. Crashed 60 miles south of Glasgow AFB, Mt
photo: John S. Koza
   
             
Capt. Guido J. Pizzeck Jr.
aircraft commander
killed
Capt. Willis C. Morris
co-pilot
killed
Capt. John H. Pulliam
navigator
killed
Capt. Jerry W. Berendzen
navigator
killed
1st Lt. Daniel C. Woodward
EWO
killed
1st Lt. David L. Harlan
navigator
killed
Tech. Sgt. Edwin Fonzy Arlington
tailgunner
killed
FEEDBACK

Thanks to John Koza who has provided extra information concerning the loss of 55-0108 including a photo of the memorial to the crew and newspaper cuttings of the event.
in emails 6th June 2008

 

  57‑0179

18th June 1965
USAF
 B-52F 57‑0179 441 BS
7 BW  Carswell AFB, TX then attached to 3960 SW, USAF,
Andersen, Guam
The first Arc Light raid on South Vietnam.

Mid‑air collision with B‑52F 57‑0047
over the South Pacific Ocean while circling approximately 250 miles
offshore at the point of the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ)  awaiting KC-135As for pre-strike air refuelling.

4 survivors, 8 fatalities among the 12 crewmen

The crew was from the 441st BS, 320th BW, Mather AFB, CA which was attached to the 3960th SW.

Five of twelve crew aboard
the two aircraft were known to have ejected, but one died in the sea of
injuries after his ejection.
3 KIA
3 ejected
18th June 1965
USAF
 B-52F 57‑0047 441 Bombardment Squadron
7 BW attached to 3960 SW, USAF,
Andersen, Guam

1Lt. James A. Marshall; MIA
Maj. James Monroe Gehrig Jr.; MIA
Capt. Tyrrell G. Lowry; MIA
Capt. Robert L. Armond; MIA
MSgt. Harold James Roberts Jr.; MIA
Capt. Frank P. Watson  MIA
Joe Carrol Robertson, Capt, KIA.
TSgt. William Edward Neville KIA

5 KIA
1 Survived
 

      

 

 
Date: Tue, 26 Jan 2010 12:26:38 -0800
From: ted
To: info@pownetwork.org
Subject: ROBERTS, HAROLD JAMES JR.

 
I came across your bio of TSgt Roberts at

 
I flew on that mission that day, and your remarks don't have the story quite right.  This was the very first B-52 combat strike ever, carried out by 30 B-52s grouped in 10 cells of 3 aircraft each. Through a combination of circumstances, including an ill-conceived air refueling rendezvous plan, one cell elected to make a 360-degree turn for timing purposes and ended up flying head-on through a following cell. Two aircraft collided at a closing speed of about 1000 MPH, the wing of one striking the vertical stabilizer of the other, slicing off both.  They went down off the northern end of the Philippines, nowhere near the DMZ.


 

 

 

http://www.ejection-history.org.uk/Aircraft_by_Type/b52_stratofortress.htm identifies B-52F, 57‑0179 as 441 BS, 7 BW attached to 3960 Sw, USAF, Andersen.

The crew was from the 441st BS, 320th BW, Mather AFB, CA which was attached to the 3960th SW.

Based upon 1957 USAF Serial Numbers, Last Revised March 13, 2009,
(
Source:  http://home.att.net/~jbaugher/1957.html,)
the aircraft was assigned to the 7th BW, Carswell AFB, TX then attached to the 3960th SW.  AFHSO Research afhso.research@pentagon.af.mil confirms this.

http://www.ejection-history.org.uk/Aircraft_by_Type/b52_stratofortress.htm identifies B-52F, 57‑0047 as 441 BS, 7 BW attached to 3960 Sw, USAF, Andersen.

The crew was from the 441st BS, 320th BW, Mather AFB, CA which was attached to the 3960th SW.

Based upon 1957 USAF Serial Numbers, Last Revised March 13, 2009,
(
Source:  http://home.att.net/~jbaugher/1957.html,)
the aircraft was assigned to the 320th BW Mather AFB, CA which was then attached to the 3960th SW..  AFHSO Research afhso.research@pentagon.af.mil confirms this.

http://www.ejection-history.org.uk/Aircraft_by_Type/b52_stratofortress.htm identifies the following crew members from the midair collision of B-52F, 57-0179 and B-52F, 57-0047.

1Lt. James A. Marshall; MIA

Maj. James M. Gehrig Jr.; MIA

Capt. Tyrrell Gordon Lowry; MIA

Capt. Robert Laurence Armond; MIA

MSgt. Harold J. Roberts Jr.; MIA

Capt. Frank P. Watson MIA

Joe Carrol Robertson, Capt, KIA.

TSgt. William Edward Neville KIA

The Guam Memorial shows the ARC LIGHT MEMORIAL PLAQUE (dedicated to) SAC PERSONNEL LOST IN SOUTH EAST ASIAN OPERATIONS
(Source: http://www.306thbw.org/306thhistory/history_GuamMemorial.htm)  and documents their crew positions as:

1Lt. James A. Marshall, Copilot (CP); MIA

Maj. James M. Gehrig Jr., Pilot (P); MIA

Capt. Tyrrell G. Lowry, Radar Navigator (RN); MIA

Capt. Robert L. Armond, Electronics Warfare Officer (EW); MIA

MSgt. Harold James Roberts Jr., Gunner (G); MIA

Capt. Frank P. Watson, Navigator (N); MIA

Capt Joe Carrol Robertson, Pilot (P); KIA.

TSgt. William Edward Neville, Gunner (G); KIA

320th BW Special Order P-33, 27 February 1964 shows Capt. Watson, (N) and MSgt. Roberts (G) on the same crew at that date.

 

Two of the four survivors are:

Lt Col Charles Paul Andermann, Radar Navigator (RN). Personal knowledge and documented in Looking for Charles P. Andermann,
(Source: http://www.axpow.org/files/bulletins/sept2008.pdf.)  He retired as a Colonel.

 

320th BW Special Order P-33, 27 February 1964 shows Capt. Watson, (N) and MSgt. Roberts (G) on the same crew at that date.

 

     MIA

1st Lt. James Alfred Marshall

Copilot (CP) MIA

Maj. James Monroe Gehrig Jr.

Pilot (P) MIA

Capt. Tyrrell Gordon Lowry

Radar Navigator (RN) MIA

Capt. Robert Laurence Armond

Electronics Warfare Officer (EW) MIA
MSgt. Harold James Roberts Jr. Gunner (G) MIA
Capt. Frank Peter Watson Navigator (N) MIA
TSgt. William Edward Neville Gunner (G) KIA
     Ejected but did not survive

Capt Joe Carrol Robertson

Pilot (P) KIA
     Ejected
1st Lt James L Erbes Electronics officer ejected
1st Lt  James A. Collier Electronics warfare officer ejected
Lt. Kenneth Donald Harten Copilot, (CP) ejected
?? Charles Paul Andermann Radar Navigator (RN) ejected

Capt. Tyrrell G. Lowry

 

"I am seeking information on Lt Col Charles Paul Andermann ( Retired, SAC USAF ). I am his niece and would definitely like to contact someone who served with him or knew him at any time during his military career. Looking for Charles Andermann. I do not know when or where Uncle Chuck attended flight school (McClellan Field AL ??? 1940 ???) I do know he was a navigator with the 8th, 12th and 15th AF in the European Theater during WW11, in the 352/ 301st BG, 32nd BS. His B17 #42-39982 was shot down on Feb 25th 1944 over Regensburg Germany (MACR) #2592. All crew members were listed was having survived the crash, except Sgt Kendall KIA. CPA, along with his crew, then became POWs and were taken to Stalag Luft 1 at Barth. Uncle Chuck was a navigator with SAC in California Mather AFB the majority of his military career. He was one of the survivors of “ARC Light One” . This tragic midair crash that occurred in 1965 involved 2 B52s on a highly secretive mission that is written about in a book by the same title. I would also appreciate info on Reunion(s) of any group that Uncle Chuck might be invited to if he were still alive or any reunion that I, as an interested living relative, might attend for he remains my “admired Uncle Chuck” and I am putting together a memoir of him. Linda C Andermann"

lamb1@quixnet.net.

Don Harten, Copilot, (CP), Position deduced from losses included two pilots and one copilot leaving a copilot to survive and the source documented his rating as a pilot.  Rank at time unknown retired as a Major.  Documented in Mekong Express Mail Vol 7, Issue 1, Thailand Laos Cambodia Brotherhood.
(Source: http://www.tlc-brotherhood.org/MEM/72%20MEM%20Jun%2006.pdf.)

 This accident occurred one year and ten days after I left this squadron having served in it or its predecessor as a navigator, radar navigator, and instructor navigator for ten years.

Al Malmsten
[this section is used with Al's permission]

 

 

 
    2 Planes Collide
    The Pentagon said a co-pilot of one of the tanker refueling planes reporting seeing the two B52's collide.
    One crewman was known to have been picked up from waters off Luzon in the Philippines by an amphibious plane, a spokesman said, and other survivors were sighted in the water.
    The spokesman said officials were not absolutely certain what happened to the second of the colliding B52s because the fleet was maintaining radio silence.
    Apparently the first craft was tracked down by radar.
    A B52 normally carries a crew of six.
    The Pentagon said the planes dropped 1,000-pound and 750 pound bombs on Viet Cong forces in a heavily forested area 28 miles north of Saigon.
    A U.S. spokesman in Saigon said the B52s, which bomb from a relatively high altitude and do not dive on their targets, were used because of their greater effectiveness rather than for lack of other planes. 
  The spokesman said an uninhabited area of jungle was involved. He said the attack was in full daylight and that sophisticated electronic systems had assured pinpoint accuracy.
    First details of the B52 raid were announced in Washington. There was no immediate reaction from Peking or Hanoi, although Radio Peking called a decision to send 20,000 more U.S. troops to Viet Nam "a new step on the path of widening the war of aggression."
    The B52 raid began about daybreak and the thunder of heavy bombs were audible in Saigon. There were big flare drops and barrages of artillery in the in the vicinity of Saigon during the early morning hours.
    At Bien Hoa, the big air base 15 miles north of Saigon, intense activity also was going on apparently in connection with the B52 strike and with ground operations that were to follow.
    A spokesman said Vietnamese ground forces would be moving into the forested area soon.
partial news article ( Tacoma News Tribune, Tacoma WA, 18 Jun 1965, front page)

Oregon Flier on Lost B52
A Portland man has been reported missing following the heavy bomber strike in Viet Nam Thursday. He is Capt. Tyrrell G. Lowry, 33, son of Mr. and Mrs. H. Tyrrell Lowry, 16015 NE Stanton St. The parents received word from the Defense Department Friday morning that the Air Force officer, a navigator - radar operator, was aboard one of two Guam - based B 52 jet bombers which collided over the South China Sea near the Philippines. The planes were part of a force en route to a target, a Viet Cong installation 28 miles north of Saigon, in South Viet Nam. Capt. Lowry is a graduate of Washington High School and Oregon State University. His wife, Joanna (Ford), also an OSU graduate, resides in Rancho Cordorva CA, with their three daughters, ages 8, 5, and 3.
( Tacoma News Tribune, Tacoma WA, 20 Jun 1965, front page)

MIA information from pownetwork.org Capt. Tyreell G. Lowry (one of two Oregonian man involved) was a member of the crew of a Boeing B52 Stratofortress bomber that was involved in a mid-air crash with another B52 on 18 Jun 1965. Of the 12 men involved, 5 men successfully bailed out. More information available at Pownetwork.org

 

  Don Harten
28 Mar 01

  I flew F-105's with the 354th TFS from Jan 68 to Jan 69.  Got 130 up North and a total of 156 missions.  Later flew F-111's with the 429th TFS from Sept 72 to Jan 73 where I survived 30 missions.  Before that I had a couple of B-52 tours out of Guam and was on the first BUFF raid of the war where two of us ran head on into each other at night above a typhoon over the South China Sea.  I survived that mid air, eight did not.  Look for my book (about half done now) ARC LIGHT ONE which should be finished by Fall 2001.

My Thud was number 490 which I named the "Pink Pussycat" with a painting of the Pink Panther.  Somehow the "cat" got removed -- but the rest remained.  490 went down near Antlers, Oklahoma about 1976 flying out of the Carswell Guard.  My brother in law was president of the accident board so he gave me a few pieces when the investigation was over.  How many people keep a crunched HSI on their mantle?

Who was the crew chief on 490 during 1968?  He was a tall Tennesseean with a prominent adam's apple who came to me one day needing $100 to go home for a family emergency.  I only had $50 (I also had an ex-wife who got everything) and I've always felt bad about not having enough to help him out fully.  Since then I've wanted to GIVE him the other $50 he needed.  I believe he married a Thai girl and stayed in Thailand for a long time afterward.  I supported myself playing poker in the Stag Bar at the O club throughout 1968.   Got the only royal flush of my life there, which lit up the eyes of those behind me watching the game, and I won the ante of about one dollar for that royal.

I see fellow River Rats and Daedalians all the time but this site has lots of people from Takhli.   Although we pilots seem to congregate together and tell each other "war stories and other lies," it was really the support people we appreciated so much.  We were gone before we got to say thanks appropriately.

Later, I'm going to ask some of you for photos to go into my books, so be aware.

Don Harten
Donharten@NSaol.com

 

The missing crew includes pilots Capt. Robert L. Armond and 1Lt. James A.
Marshall, and crewmembers Maj. James M. Gehrig, Capt. Tyrrell G. Lowry,
Capt. Frank P. Watson, TSgt. William E. Neville, and MSgt. Harold J. Roberts
Jr.
Then-Lt. Don Harten, a copilot on the mission, survived the collision and parachuted into the ocean. After 16 hours in the water he was rescued by an SA-16 Albatross amphibian. 
Before the Albatross could return to base, it lost an engine and crashed back into the sea. 
Harten brings this story of survival and camaraderie to life in his book Arc Light One, and was on hand to recount his miraculous true story of survival. 

mission by B-52s to Vietnam was flown by the author of "Arc Light One," by Don Harten. Don was the co-pilot on one of the two Buffs that had a mid-air collision. If you are interested in ordering a copy, Lieutenant Colonel Don Harten  Don Harten's phone number in Las Vegas: 702-434-4557. Don said if you call,let it ring a bit; he is not as fast as he once was, or leave him a message. It is a very good reading. William Neville was the tail gunner.  Best regards . . . . Harry Tolmich

 

 
  xx        
Capt Joe Carrol Robertson
ejected, died of injuries
(KIA)
Maj James Monroe Gehrig (KIA ??
survived
??
survived
??
survived
??
survived
xx x x x x x
Capt Robert Laurence Armond (KIA) 1Lt James Alfred Marshall (KIA) Capt Frank Peter Watson (KIA) MSgt Harold James Roberts (KIA) TSgt William Edward Neville (KIA) Capt Tyrrell Gordon Lowry (KIA)

One of the crew ejected but died later - (who ??)

        "The survivors were located and taken on board an HU‑16 Albatross amphibian (51‑4287) but on attempting to take off in a heavy swell the aircraft was damaged and the survivors had to be transferred to a Norwegian freighter. The Albatross sank minutes after the crew were taken off by a Navy vessel" - Hobson

 

FEEDBACK

The first B-52 mission over Vietnam on 18 June 1965. Two B-52s collided in mid-air prior to mid-air refuelling.  My neighbour James A Marshall was
killed and lost at sea. His widow sold her house to the widow of a fellow crew man, Joe Robertson. Joe's widow was my babysitter when I was
ten.  I have two brothers and a sister, and we adored her. She was a blessing while my father was TDY in Okinawa and later in Bangkok.

My father was a KC-135 aircraft commander of the 905th AREFS whose KC-135s were based together with the B52 SAC squadron at Mather AFB in
Rancho Cordova, California. He was stationed in Okinawa at the time, but did not participate in the firstarc light mission

Joe Robertson ejected from his B-52 after the collision. The story I was told at the time was that he lost his leg and bled to death in the life raft occupied by other crewman who also ejected.

It was an awful tragedy from a close-knit Air Force community whose main purpose was strategic bombing in the Cold War. How brave they must have been. I wish I knew of the other crewmen.

Tom Huff
Bealeton, Va
in email 13th September 2008

Can anyone confirm all names and which aircraft they were on - who were the 4 ejectees ???
 
Hi from retired Col. Thomas J. O'Connor and former B-52 crewmember and also an EW on the F-105 Wild Weasel (Vietnam-1968-69).  On the B-52 accident and combat losses website, please reference the mid-air collision of two B-52s over the waters near Vietnam on June 18, 1965.  The website is trying to determine the names of some of the crewmembers.  The EW on one of the colliding B-52s was Toki Endo.
 
Tom

 

 

 

This mission involved 31 airplanes and 31 crews. The crews were sent TDY to Guam in April of 1965 along with the wing B-52Fs. Approximately half the crews were from the 441st Bomb Squadron, 320 BW at Mather AFB and the other half from the 9th BS, 7th BW at Carswell AFB. Our KC-135 squadrons were sent to Kadena AFB, Okinawa. When we were ordered on ARC LIGHT 1 we were organized into 10 cells of three airplanes each and ordered to maintain three airplane formations throughout the mission. We were to rendezvous with 30 tankers flying three ship cells over the South China Sea. The crews were kept intact and we did not mix squadrons on crew assignment, but no such provision was made for aircraft assignment, so the draw of a 320th or 7th airplane was random. The 30 airplanes thought to be in the best condition were assigned to the mission. The 31st airplane was a hangar queen, so it was assigned as backup. Capt. Steve Kovacs and his crew (9th BS) were assigned as backup. The mission was to be in complete radio silence until outbound from the Philippines on the way home. The first 5 cells were 441st crews and the last 5 cells 9th crews. A typhoon sat over the refuelling track, so we were expecting less than wonderful weather.

When we launched, one of the 441st crews had mechanical problems and could not launch. Kovacs received the order to launch. This would be Steve's first solo mission as Aircraft Commander because he had upgraded from Co-Pilot only a few days before.

As we approached the refuelling area my AC and Co-Pilot observed an explosion in one of the leading cells in the formation. We could not imagine two B-52s mid-air since a bomber-tanker midair seemed more likely and the explosion was in the refuelling area. Some of my squadron mates heard the beepers after the collision which indicated that some crew members had bailed out, but my primary duty was monitoring the HF radio for any change of orders and I was not listening to guard. Also, this was the first time we had carried the beepers and I did not think about it. We kept on and met our tanker, as did the other two in our cell.

After we struck our target and passed the Philippines outbound, the flight leader polled the stream and 23 airplanes answered. My AC asked me if I had heard any enemy activity and I replied that my scopes were quiet the whole flight and I had not seen any sign of hostile activity. At this point we expected 29 to answer because we still thought that it was a bomber-tanker collision. As it turned out, two bombers had crashed and four could not hit the target because they did not get their fuel. The only place they had fuel to reach was Kadena so they went there. Steve Kovacs had an electrical failure so could not transfer fuel from his main body after the failure and had to land at Clark. The only bases in SEA that had 300 foot wide runways were Anderson and Kadena at that time, so Steve was forced to land no flaps and heavy on a 150 foot runway which is really exciting with 147 feet between the outriggers.

Willis 'Cookie' Cooke
K5EWJ & Trustee N5BPS, USS Cavalla, USS Stewart

EWO, 9th Bomb Squadron, 1963-1968
Willis further writes concerning two other B-52 mishaps on 28th February 1968 and 4th October 1968
in email 10th January 2012

 

 

  

17th January 1966
approx.
10:30 a.m

USAF
B-52G 58‑0256 SAC

68 BW
Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro, N.C

During 24hour "Operation Chrome Dome".

Collided with KC‑135A during air‑to‑air refuelling.Near Palomares, Spain.  A total of four nuclear weapons fell from wreckage.

     

 
   
Aircraft Commander instructor pilot Captain Charles "Charlie" Wendorf ejected landed in sea Pilot Major Larry Messinger ejected landed in sea

[personal testimony January 2007] 

Co-pilot Michael Rooney ejected landed in sea Radar Navigator Capt. Ivan Buchanan ejected came down on land First Lieutenant  George J. Glesner (dead) First Lieutenant Steven G. Montanus
(dead)
Tech. Sergeant Ronald P. Snyder (missing)
FEEDBACK

On the 17th of January 1966 a B52G had an accident during a refuelling over Palomares in Spain. 4 of 7 crew members survived, all 4 crew members of the refuelling aircraft KC-135A died. On your website you list the 4 survivors:

Capt. Wendorf
Major Messinger
First Lieutenant Rooney
Capt. Buchanan

(I attach a picture of 3 survivors in a Spanish hospital, Capt. Wendorf, Major Messinger and First Lieutenant Rooney, Capt. Buchanan is missing)

 

The 3 killed crew members of the B52G that you do not name were:

Tech. Sergeant Ronald P. Snyder (missing)
First Lieutenant Steven G. Montanus (dead)
First Lieutenant  George J. Glesner (dead)

The 4 crew members of the KC-135A were:

Major Emil T. Chapla (dead)
Capt. Paul R. Lane (missing)
Capt. Leo M. Simmons (missing)
Sergeant Major Lloyd C. Potoliccio (dead)

 

On the front page of a Spanish newspaper of the 18th of January 1966 was published, that in total 5 crew members were safed and that 8 crew members died (12 victims).

7 dead bodies were found at land, some witnesses stated that the 8th body was found in the sea and others at land.

 Then another dead body was found, this man managed to get out of one of the aircrafts but his parachute caught fire. So on the 19th of January 1966 another Spanish newspaper published an article in which they mentioned 13 victims (4 survivors and 9 dead).

 Later the names of  4 survivors, the 3 (at this stage) dead or missing crew members from the B52G and the 4 (at this stage) dead or missing crew members from the KC-135A (so 11 victims) was published (from here I have got the information) and 1 year later the Spanish press only mentioned the 4 survivors of the B52G and the 4 dead crew members of the KC-135A.

----------------------------------------

I found some more information about this accident, the following link will take you to an article (thesis) that confirms the names of the B 52 G crew.
 
http://etd.lib.fsu.edu/theses/available/etd-04102006-115019/unrestricted/jmm_thesis.pdf

----------------------

Best regards
Joachim Winterfeldt
in emails 31st January & 1st February 2008

 

                 
 

 

 58‑0228

18th November 1966
USAF
B-52G 58‑0228 SAC
Barksdale AFB, Louisiana
Crashed 14 miles north north east of Hayward, Wisconsin. Exploded during routine refuelling mission  and flew into the woodland ground during night time low level mission.
 
                 
Capt. Curtis E. Robertson
pilot
killed
1st Lt. Darrick R. Negron
Co-pilot
killed
Capt. Edward E. Kamph
Radar Navigator
killed
1st Lt. Jerome P. Calligari
navigator
killed
Capt. Michael J. Dunlap
EWO
killed
Airman 1st Class Gerald D. Turney
gunner
killed
Lt. Col. Jack Atherton
Instructor Pilot
killed
Major James H. Crook
Instructor Navigator
killed
M.Sgt Lonnie Woodard
Electronics & Maintenance Eng.
killed
FEEDBACK

1)  The 19Nov66 crash identified as having been a KI Sawyer AFB B-52 in refuelling actually was a B-52G from Barksdale AFB, Louisiana . They were on a low level terrain avoidance night mission (before SAC stopped the night TA flights). They had just entered low level and were calibrating their terrain avoidance radar, when they got too low, clipped the tops of the forest and crashed. I named my son after the navigator on that flight, 1Lt. Jerome "Buddy" Calligari.

KInd regards,

Jack A. Kelley
in email 27th May 2008

update - date now believed to be night of 18th / 19th November 1966

 

                 
5th July 1967
USAF
B-52G 57‑6494 72 BW
Ramey AFB
Crashed into water on take‑off from Ramey AFB, PR. Life‑raft inflated, causing control loss.      
               
Captain Donald Foster, Aircraft
(Columbia, SC) Commander

killed
Captain Erwin Cowart
(Twin City, GA)

Co-pilot

killed
Capt. Taivo Patajan(Fresno, CA)
[Radar-Nav
or Nav?]
ejected
1/LT Paul Grimm
(Jacksonville, FL)
[Radar-Nav or Nav?]
ejected
1st Lt. Richard St. George
(Watsonville, CA)

EWO,

no ejection

killed
Sgt Leroy Spence
(Morrice, MI)
Crew Chief
killed in aircraft
T.Sgt. Ronald Hagis
Gunner
bailed out
Was there another crew member?
 

Thanks to Orlando Gallardo, Jr. for locating the following details to help complete the crew listing in email dated 21st December 2011

"   .   .   .Captain Erwin Cowart was the co-pilot aboard the B-52G (#57-6494) that crashed on take off from Ramey AFB, Puerto Rico on 5 July 1967. The aircraft and crew served with the 72nd Bomb Wing at Ramey AFB (Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, USA).

Incident report from: http://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/wiki.php?id=74619

"Crew S-05. Aircraft climbed straight out on the runway heading and it appeared normal until it reached an altitude of approximately 3000 feet and a distance of 5 miles from the take-off position. At this time a steep nose-over maneuver was noticed and the aircraft continued down in a steep dive until it disappeared below the horizon. Three crewmen ejected and survived. The aircraft struck the ocean at a steep angle. Later analysis indicated that the life raft stowed behind the co-pilot inflated, pushing him into the control yoke."

The aircraft crashed into the water. Military divers recovered the remains of those killed in the incident."

 

 

   56‑0627

7th July 1967
USAF
B-52D 56‑0627
Red 1
22 BW attached to 4133 BW(P) USAF, Andersen  Mid‑air collision with B‑52D 56‑0595.       
             
Maj. John Suther
pilot
survived
Capt. Wm. Creedon
co-pilot
survived
Lt. Rod Gable
Navigator
survived
Maj Gen William Joseph Crumm (KIA)
still missing
Maj Paul Andrew Avolese
(KIA)
still missing
Capt David Fritz Bittenbender
(KIA)
still missing

Sgt. Lynn Chase
tailgunner
survived
FEEDBACK

 I ran across your site and I wanted to add some info to the mid-air crash  of B-52D #56-0595 on July 7, 1967.   The survivors were Maj. John Suther-pilot, Capt. Wm. Creedon-co-pilot, Lt. Rod Gable-Navigator and Sgt. Lynn Chase-tailgunner. 

Thanks for your site. 

Lynn Chase
in email 24th August 2008

additions added 24th August 2008

 

 

   56‑0595

                 
7th July 1967
USAF
B52D 56‑00595
Red 2
4133 BW(P) A/c from 454 BW mid-air collision with no. 56-0627 over South China Sea near Saigon while “changing formation lead.”      
x x      
Captain Charles Herman Blankenship
(KIA)
RR 2nd May 1997
1st Lt George Emerson Jones
(KIA)
RR 2nd May 1997
MSgt Olen Burke McLaughlin
rear gunner
(KIA)
still missing
Captain George  Westbrook
AC
survived
Captain Harold Dean Thompson
CP
survived
Captain Toki Endo
survived
 

The photo of the rear gunner of 595, MSGT Olen Burke McLaughlin, originally of Portland, Indiana, was kindly provided by Matthew P. Simmons, Board of Directors, Museum of the Soldier, Inc. Portland, Indiana, via the McLaughlin family

 

1968. It was an unpopular war. I flew 138 missions in Vietnam. We lost four airplanes in two mid-air collisions. One of my friends, Toki Endo, broke his right

elbow when he ejected. He hit it on the superstructure on the way out. Gen. Crumm, our division commander, was on the plane that day as a third pilot. He went down with the plane. His wife and daughter were back on the base waiting on him so they could go back to the States.

They were all packed; they had finished their two-year tour.

[Lt Col Toki R. Endo Toki R. Endo, Lt Col, USAF(Ret.), Yorba Linda, CA]
 

 

 

   56‑0601

                 
8th July 1967
USAF
Boeing B-52D Stratofortress 56‑0601 Crew
736th Bomb Squadron, 454th Bomb Wing (on TDY), 4133rd Bomb Wing (P), SAC

A/c from 22 BW.
USAF, Andersen

On an Arc Light mission from Anderson AFB, Guam to Utapao RTNAFB. Hit by gound fire over Vihn causing complete hydraulic failure. Pilot made decision to divert to Da Nang. The aircraft was destroyed in emergency landing at Da Nang.Vietnam. They were attempting to make a no-flaps landing, landed long, and were unable to stop before going into a mine field off the end of the runway. Only the gunner survived.  
 
Maj. Gene Wesley "Swede" Brown
 (KIA)
Capt James Thomas Davis
(KIA)
Capt Anthony Kent Johnson
(KIA)
Capt William Henry Pritchard
(KIA)
Capt Donald J. Reynolds
(KIA)
Albert J. Whately
Tail gunner
survived
   

 

   61‑0030

                 
2nd November 1967
09:45

USAF
B-52H 61‑0030 319 BW
Griffiss AFB, NY.
Asymmetric overshoot attempted following control lost during instrument approach      
               
Maj. Robert A. Richards
pilot
killed
1st Lt. William S. Fairhurst
co-pilot
ejected
1st Lt. Sidney W. Glover
radar navigator
ejected
broken leg and chest injuries
Maj. Lloyd D. Lassman
radar navigator
killed
Capt. Joe E. Turner
EWO
killed
S.Sgt. John Nealey Snyder
gunner
killed
S.Sgt. Willard F. Walker
crew chief
killed
Sgt. Gordon S. Flick
crew chief
killed
   

 

                 
 

 

21st January 1968


USAF
B-52G 58‑0188
HOBO 28
528th Bomb Squadron
380 S
trategic Aerospace Wing
Plattsburgh AFB, NY
Cabin fire caused crash on sea ice, North Star Bay Seven miles south‑west of Thule AB, Greenland. Aircraft engaged on airborne alert duty.      
             
Capt. John Haug
Aircraft Commander
ejected
Capt. Leonard Svitenko
co-pilot
unsuccesful manual bail-out attempt
killed during crash
Maj. Alfred Joe D'Amario
supplemental pilot
ejected
(safety officer from Wing HQ)
Capt Richard "Dick" Marx
Electronics Warfare Officer
ejected
SSgt Calvin W. "Cal" Snapp
Gunner
ejected facing backwards at 6000ft, 600 knots.
sustained back and elbow injuries

His helmet was torn from his head by the force of the ejection. The helmet was found 9 years later from  Greenland Fox canyon by two USAF servicemen who were hiking

Maj. Frank Hopkins
radar navigator
ejected
Capt. Curtis Criss
navigator
ejected
The Aircraft Commander, the Radar Navigator and the Navigator all sustained injuries either during the ejection or post-ejection
 

I was at Castle AFB in the last phase of B-52 co-pilot training when this crash occurred.  As a result, my orders were changed, and I was diverted to be assigned to the 528th Bomb Squadron, 380 Strategic Aerospace Wing at Plattsburgh AFB, NY. 
Upon arrival at Plattsburgh, I was assigned to the crew which was involved in that unfortunate accident.9  All other crew members ejected successfully.  

The Aircraft Commander, the Radar Navigator and the Navigator all sustained injuries either during the ejection or post-ejection. 

The Aircraft Commander was Capt. John Haug. 

The supplemental pilot was Maj. Joe D'Amario.

The Electronics Warfare Officer was Capt Dick Marx.

The Gunner was TSgt or SSgt Cal Snapp. 

I never flew with either of the nav team, and I cannot recall their names. 

Capt Marx stayed on the crew, R-04,  for some time, but all others were re-assigned to other duties or crews after the accident. 

Thank you for the interesting website

Billy Smith, Jr.
Col. USAF (Ret.)
Las Vegas, NV 
in email 3rd January 2009

 

Here is one I didn't see on your site. It involved 6 ejections and one
unsuccesful manual bail-out attempt:

(quoted from http://www.semp.us/biots/biot_404.php)

A nuclear weapon/air disaster rapidly evolved on January 21, 1968 when pilots of a SAC B-52G ("Stratofortress") from the 328 Bomb Wing
(Plattsburgh Air Force Base, New York) flying the "Butterknife V" route detected smoke in the navigator’s compartment. "The smoke came from a malfunctioning cabin heater, and it resisted all attempts to be extinguished," notes one report. To remain within radio range, the big bomber made a turn back towards Thule about ninety miles magnetic south ofthe base. The fire in the cabin cut off electrical power. When lights of Thule appeared ahead a few minutes later, the fire became too intense to allow controlled flight, so Captain Haug ordered the evacuation of the plane. Co-pilot Svitenko was told to make it out the hatch, but apparently his path was blocked by the flames and he died in the ensuing crash. The reminder of the crew (five men) drifted down over the base area and sustained only slight injuries. The doomed aircraft continued to descend  until it impacted and exploded into three-foot thick ice about five miles beyond the Thule port area.

=============================
I recall this accident - I was a navigator on B-52G's at Barksdale AFB, LA at the time. I had flown one 24-hour airborne alert mission with nuclear weapons - "Chrome Dome" - in the vicinity of Greenland in 1967. I flew another in 1968, but without weapons: SAC changed the missions to airborne alert "indoctrination" because of this embarrassing accident.  (We didn't know if we were to carry bombs or not until we arrived at the aircraft and found the bomb-bay was empty.)

Incidently, for these missions an extra pilot was carried to increase the maximum crew duty day to 30 hours. This aircraft had 7 crew members aboard. The six crew members in ejection seats ejected successfully, but the extra pilot - whose primary escape exit was the hole left by the jettisoned main entrance hatch door through which the navigator ejected - was killed when he hit the array of "scimitar" ecm antennae immediatel behind the hatch.

The "cabin heater" was an air duct that funnelled a mixture of extremely hot bleed air from the engine compressors and cold outside air. A
malfunction in the mixing process allowed the extremely hot air to enter the cabin.
===================
Also, I recall the 17th February 1973 A-7D bailout near Nakhon Phanom RTAFB, Thailand. I was the navigator on a ABCCC C-130 orbiting off the Nakhon Phanom VORTAC and listened to the guard channel communicatin between the pilot and the ground. He stayed with the aircraft until he crossed the Mekong river out of Laos, then bailed out just as he reached the Thailand side of the river. His last words before bailout were "assuming the position......going."

I was stationed at Korat RTAFB for the year, and I remember the 2nd November 1973 A-7D bailout. The pilot was on initial for an overhead approach to Korat and flamed out.  A "RAT" (Ram Air Turbine) would deploy automatically after flame-out to produce hydraulic pressure, but a peculiarity of the A-7 was that if the RAT failed the aircraft could pitch hard over and crash from that low altitude. The procedure was to bailout immediately. The plane slowly glided away from the base and crashed. By the time a team from the base arrived at the site, local Thais had beaten them to it and carried of large parts of the wreck.

Lt Col Thomas M Sanders
USAF Retired

==================================

United States. Nuclear weapon lost in 1968 crash: BBC

Canwest News Service

Published: Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The United States abandoned a nuclear weapon under the ice in northern Greenland after it was lost following a plane crash in 1968, the BBC reported yesterday after using testimony of those involved and declassified documents obtained under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act. On Jan. 21, 1968, a B-52 bomber patrolling the U.S. military base at Thule crashed into the ice and, while the explosives surrounding four nuclear weapons on board detonated, the active nuclear devices did not. Investigators recovered thousands of pieces of debris from the site, but soon realized that only three of the weapons had been accounted for. An underwater search was launched in April, but they found nothing and eventually the investigators gave up.

 

                 
 Wednesday
28th February 1968

USAF
B-52F
Stratofortress
57‑0173 7 BW Crashed off Matagorda Island, Tx. Details unknown      
Major Frank M. Salavarria
killed
Capt. Charles W. Roberts
killed
Sgt. Kermit C. Casey
killed
Lt. William T. Causey
killed
Lt. Michael L. Carroll
killed
Capt. John T. Pantilla
killed

       
Capt. Thomas D. Childs
training navigator

killed
Major Phillip F. Strine
killed
       
FEEDBACK

I ran across your site and wanted to provide you with some additional information on the crash of B-52 57-173

First, I can confirm that the actual date of the crash was 02/29/68 (not 02/28).  I also provided the webmaster of this site with the additional detail listed there:  http://home.att.net/~jbaugher/1957.html
Details unknown.  Everything seemed routine until radio contact was lost.  There is speculation that the wing clipped an abberant wave while flying at low altitude.

I'm hoping to get the more detailed accident report but all indications are now that there was no opportunity nor attempt to bail out.  My dad was the pilot and I've included a photo of the crew that was aboard 57-173 (although it appears the photo was taking in front of 57-174).

Steve Salavarria
in email 30th April 2008

 

 

FEEDBACK

2)  The 29Feb68 crash off Matagorda Island, Texas was a 7th Bomb Wing B-52F from Carswell AFB, Texas. I was in the 7th Bomb Wing, and knew all the crewmembers on that flight very well. SAC had an "iron bomb" and radar bomb scoring site on Matagorda Island. Associated with the site was a high level and a low level route out over the Gulf of Mexico that terminated with a bomb run on Matagorda. The aircraft that crashed was on a low level mission, and had turned a hundred or so miles out over the water to make a low level run at Matagorda. According to the wing safety officer, with whom I spoke after the crash (we were all B-52 crewmembers), they probably lost their main electrical buss. In a B-52, that is a catastrophic failure that makes it impossible to control the stabilator trim. He speculated that they crashed almost immediately after losing stab trim. Much of the aircraft remains were dredged up by shrimp boats, and much washed up on Matagorda, St. Joseph, and Padre Islands.

Please e-mail the Matagorda information to the aircraft commander's son, Steve Salvarria, who sent in the crew photos. I knew his dad well. I think I can also come up with the names of the other crewmembers that are pictured, but not identified.

KInd regards,

Jack A. Kelley
in email 27th May 2008

 

FEEDBACK

I discovered your site in a Google search for info on a Carswelll B-52F lost on a run on Matagorda island - good info!

I flew B52F's at Carswell in 66 and 67, pulled alert many times with Major Salavarria's crew that went down off Matagorda. Another combination of hazards there - the combination of lights from oil platforms and fishing boats, scattered to broken clouds at the low level flight altitude, sight of moon and stars through the broken clouds, gave pilots a severe case of the 'leans' - spatial disorientation - made you not want to beleive your attidude indicator. We traded the controls frequently on low level.
combine this with a bird strike - we hit a seagull one dark night low level on that route, fortunately it hit the upper nose radome, not our windshield. If it hit a windshield and broke it, combine that with spatial disorientation, and you have another possible cause of the loss of 57-173.

scrolling through the rest - Capt Sipes crew, lost 10 May 1969, was in my squadron, knew them well.

 I saw mention of the B-52D takeoff accident at U-Tapao, where the crew all survived. I was at either Guam or Kadena at the time, and I beleive we were briefed that this was a takeoff in a heavy rainstorm - the runway had a high 'crown' down the center because of the frequent heavy rains, but the plane gor off centerline and was hydroplaning, could not steer back onto centerline, ran off the runway. If this is posted, perhaps others will come up with details and crew name. Might also find information from the site for the B52 stratofortrress association.

The 27 July 1969 takeoff accident at Anderson happened in daylight, was witnessed by a C-141 crew - the 10 May 1969 accident happened at night, and it was surmised that it had been the same wing failure that caused the 10 May 1969 crash. My crew was returning to Anderson from a night mission on 27 July 1969, and we couldn't raise the Anderson command post on UHF at the normal point about 200 miles out. We continued on in and contacted Guam center, and as we approached the island we could see the column of smoke off the end of runway 06R



Thanks for putting the info online!!

Fred Wagner
Captain, USAF retired
in email 7th March 2011

 

 

 

I would like to say hello to Steve Salavaria and pass my condolences to him for the loss of his dad so long ago. I was an EWO in the 9th BS from 1963 to 1968 and knew Frank Salavaria and Charlie Roberts for most of those years. I am sure that I knew the others as well, but my memory fails me at this time.

B-52F 57-173 had a history of electrical problems and most of us were not happy to fly it, but we could not avoid any particular airplane. The picture shows 174 but crews were not assigned to a particular airplane and we were obligated to fly whatever airplane we were assigned. As I recall, this was a Standboard flight. I always hated Standboard flights because we were graded on following procedures to the letter, which always scared me. Most missions started with an air refueling then a navigation leg. After these some high level bombing/ECM runs and a low level leg and some low level racetrack bomb/ECM runs, then a return to Carswell for some pilot proficiency work (mostly approaches and landings). The crew had completed the high level work and were making low level bombing runs on the Matagorda Bomb Plot. They had completed one run and turned outbound for a racetrack and another run. They never called inbound for the next run.

 

A thorough search of the area was made and not a trace of 57-173 was found floating in the Gulf. The Air Force did a lot of beach combing, along with the continuous beach combing by the public. A few pieces of foam and Frank Salavaria's summer flight jacket washed up on the beach near Corpus. I spent a year at Minot then returned to Texas. Shrimp boats continuously trawl the area. I have monitored the Texas newspapers and lived on the Gulf Coast for over 40 years and have watched for news of Frank, the crew and 173, but not a peep has appeared.

Willis 'Cookie' Cooke
Willis further writes concerning two other B-52 mishaps on 18th June 1965 and 4th October 1968
in email 10th January 2012

 

 

 

                 
Thursday 29th August 1968
Evening

USAF
B-52C 54‑2667 306 BW
McCoy AFB, Orlando
Flap malfunction experienced, followed by total  electrical failure and subsequent fuel starvation Crashed near Cape Kennedy, Fl. and exploded abandoned by crew.
All 7 ejected
   
 
             
Major Bobby L. Ward
Pilot
Universal City, Texas
ejected
Captain J. Larry Pankau
Co-pilot
Chattanooga, Tennessee
ejected
Major Roy F. Rohde
Sheboygan, Wisconsin
ejected
1LT Edgar F. Wockenfuss
Jr.
Amherst, Illinois
ejected
Captain Roger W. Reeser
EWO
Kingsport, Tennessee
ejected
Captain Ray McGee
Radar Navigator
Alamosa, Colorado
ejected
T.Sgt. Robert Logue
Gunner
Peekskill, NY
ejected
FEEDBACK

". . . My ex-husband, Larry Pankau, was one of the pilots on that plane.  They took off from McCoy AFB on a routine training mission and lost all electrical power soon after take off.  They flew long enough to burn off excess fuel, then turned the plane out to the ocean, and the crew ejected.  Larry was the only one injured.  His ejection seat tangled with the zero delay lanyard and went down with him...on half a parachute.  The KC135 radioed back that he had gone down without a chute...when the Chaplain and the commander's wife show up at your home while your husband is on a mission, that is scary.  Larry landed in a swamp and was alive, but he suffered serious injury to his right shoulder, which caused him problems for the rest of his life.  The B52 crashed on Cape Kennedy....in an open field.  Larry kept his helmet and one of the contol levers...he wanted the ejection seat, but the AF would not let him have it.  I can't remember the names of the other crew members.  Larry died last August 6 of cancer.  He was a dedicated AF officer. 
Sincerely, "

Sally Pankau
in email 28th January 2009

FEEDBACK

My name is Natalie Ward. Bobby L Ward is my husband’s uncle. Bob is a great man and has a great sense of humor.

He told us about this plane crash at his brother James W Ward’s funeral.

I have been researching our family and came across some articles on this plane crash that I wanted to share.

The first Article is Hutchinson News on August 31, 1968 (Hutchinson, Kansas)

The Article title is: Superfort Almost Made The Ocean

Cape Kennedy, Fla (AP)

--“I was trying for the ocean and almost made it,” said the pilot of an Air Force B52 bomber that skimmed over populated areas and a nuclear submarine before crashing in a remote area of Cape Kennedy.

The fuel-loaded Stratofortress exploded as it smashed into an Atlantic beach about two miles from missile row at 8:50 pm plowing a deep furrow in the ground and scattering charred wreckage over a wide area.

All seven crewmen bailed out. The Air Force said they received only minor injuries.

There was no damage to facilities at Cape Kenney where several rockets are poised on multimillion-dollar launch pads, including the Saturn 1B which is to launch the first three-man Apollo astronaut team into orbit

in October. There also were several thousand workmen at the cape at the time of the crash. The Air Force said the pilot, Major Bobby L. Ward of Universal City, Texas, avoided a potentially disastrous situation by staying with

the disabled plane until the last moment as it passed over the cities of Coca, Cocoa Beach and Titusville, and Port Canaveral.

The second article I found is from The Abilene Reporter News

http://www.archives.com/member/Services/na.ashx?key=84448772&type=pdf&searchText=Bobby%20Ward

 

September 1, 1968 Abilene, Texas

Article Title: Bomber Pilot Commended For Missing Cities

Cape Kennedy, Fla (AP)

--Major Bobby L Ward of Universal City, Texas guided a $10 million B52 bomber over populated areas and avoided a potentially disastrous situation Thursday night. Air Force officials commended him. “I was trying for the

ocean and almost made it,” Ward said after crashing in a remote area of Cape Kennedy. The fuel-loaded Strtofortress exploded as it smashed into an Atlantic beach about two miles from the missile base where several

rockets are poised on multimillion-dollar launch pads. These included the Saturn 1B which is to launch the first three-man Apollo astronaut team into orbit in October. Several thousand workmen were at the cape at the time.

The disabled plane also passed over Cocoa, Cocoa Beach, Titusville, and Port Canaveral. Several crewman bailed out before the plane plowed a deep furrow in the ground and scat- The crewmen, ordered by Ward to bail out,

received only minor injuries. The B52 had engine trouble soon after takeoff from Orlando.

in email 22nd July 2012

   
 

 

                 
4th October 1968
USAF
B-52H 60‑0027 5 BW
Minot N.D.
Fuel mismanagement during a landing approach resulted in multiple flame‑out of Nos 1‑4 engines  Crashed eight miles short of runway at Minot AFB, ND      
           
Maj. Laurence A McGuirk
38
Brooklyn, NY
pilot
ejected killed
[newspapers reported that he had survived]
see note below
Lt. Ronald C. Hortter
28
Cape Giradeaux, Mo.
Co-pilot
killed
Lt. Col. Charles E. Poole
45
Eastham, Massachusetts
instructor pilot
killed
Maj. Jerry W. Jamison
35
Forest, Mo.
Radar Navigator
ejected
survived
Tech. Sgt. Ronald E. Blazina
33
Red Lodge, Montana
gunner
bailed-out at low altitude
killed
Sgt. Louis E. Cole
Tahlequah, Oklahoma
killed

not a member of the crew

 

Lt. Col. Poole was in the Pilot seat and ejected. He was hit by a falling hatch after ejection and fatally injured. He was just days from retirement and volunteered to fly one last mission.

Lt. Hortter was in the co-pilot seat, ejected successfully and survived.

Major McGuirk was apparently occupying the jump seat and was unable to manually bail out the RN hatch.

Sgt. Cole was the squadron clerk and wanted to see what a B-52 flight was like, so went to the altitude chamber and other required training so he could go on a flight.

No Navigator or EW was scheduled for this flight, so presumably these positions were not occupied.

Sgt. Blazina baled out low and hit the ground before his chute opened.

There was speculation that Sgt. Blazina delayed ejection in an attempt to help Sgt. Cole strap in to the EW seat for ejection. The cockpit area was consumed by fire, so no one can be sure. Maj. Jamison had a previous ejection from a B-47 and requested non-flying duty for the rest of his career. The rumor was that the Air Force asked him to resign with 16 years service and that he moved to Sweden. Lt. Col. Poole had been the Alert Barracks Commander, but had been replaced because he was retiring in a day or two. He was still a current IP, so was tapped for this training flight even though retirees were usually allowed to stand down from flying for the last week or so of their career. Major McGuirk told me that he had been an Aircraft Commander of a B-52 (I don't recall what unit) and had volunteered for a Viet Nam tour to get away from SAC. He completed a tour as a FAC in either O-1 or O-2 and then received orders back to SAC so he was not a happy camper. Only Maj. Jamison and Sgt. Blazina were current crew members.

The airplane fell so straight down in a spin that the wing tips and tail were in the correct position connected by burn marks and there were no marks on the wheat field where the airplane fell.

The crash happened near the end of a 7 hour pilot training mission when on final approach. At that point in the approach the flaps should be down and the crew lowering the gear. There was little if any airspeed at the impact and I speculate that the lack of airspeed contributed to the hatch impact for Lt. Col. Poole and the streamer for Sgt. Blazina. Sgt. Blazina would have had no indication of airspeed to help his judgement.

I was a crew EWO and a Captain in the 23 BS at the time.

Willis 'Cookie' Cooke
Willis further writes concerning two other B-52 mishaps on 18th June 1965 and  28th February 1968
in email 10th January 2012

 

Hello
I found your website and went through the files on B-52s. GREAT WORK.
I noticed that on B-52H 60-0027 you have it listed as 15th Bomb Wing
It was assigned to the 5th Bomb Wing at Minot. I was up early that morning getting ready to fly to Omaha to visit my parents. I was outside loading my car. At the time I was living at Surrey ND just east of Minot. I heard the aircraft approaching and it did not sound right. Sounded  like the engines were cutting out. Moments later the sky to the north lit up.

Mike Hil
Minot ND
in email 21st April 2012
entry amended to 5th Bomb Wing 22nd April 2012

 

 
 

 

                 
18th / Tuesday 19th November 1968

Exact date needed

04:15


USAF
Boeing B-52D
Stratofortress
55‑0103
Cream 2
346th Bomb Sqn
99th Bomb Wing
attached to
306 BW
Kadena AB, Okinawa
  4252 Strategic Wing
"Arc-Light Mission" en-route to Vietnam. Aborted take‑off and was destroyed by fire. Crew egressed on the ground.
 

 

           
William "Billy" Dilworth
Pilot
survived
 
Capt. Gary B. Sible
Navigator
broken leg
survived
Alex Damellio
Radar Navigator
broken leg
survived
Capt Charles David Miller
EWO
(Died of injuries several days later - 26th November 1968 - to confirm)

 
Austin J. Decker II
EWO
survived
Al Aroney
Tail gunner
survived
Staff Sergeant
Jerry Nixon Scott

crew chief mechanic
[306th OM SQDN, 4252nd Strategic Wing]
not part of the crew
Died of injuries on 24th November 1968
  Details to be confirmed

 

                 
23rd November 1968
USAF
B-52 Stratofortress   96th Bombardment Wing at Dyess AFB, Texas

TDY operation at Anderson AFB, Guam

Aircraft was refuelling north of the Philippines while on mission to Vietnam.

After the ejection the aircraft dropped its bomb load into South China Sea and landed at  Ching Chuan Kwang AB, Taiwan.

Major Eugene ray McCune
EWO
[337th Bomb Sqn, 4133rd Bomb Wing (P), SAC]
ejected
[reason unknown]
Declared dead 7th December 1968
   
 

 

                 
2nd December 1968
USAF
B-52D 55‑0115 306 BW Kadena AB attached to 4252 SW Overshot runway. Destroyed by fire      
 

 

In 1968, I was station in Castle A.F.B. Calif. My rank at the time was A2 class training on the B-52 in
the hydraulics section. I remember the name, Sgt. DeCante who was assigned as my crew chief on a
B-52 that crashed in '68, all crew members perished. Afterwards, I was reassigned to another base.
I have checked and the only listing for a B-52 crash near Castle A.F.B. was Oct. 1969. I have not been
able to locate this incident which occurred in 1968. I was stationed at Andersen A.F.B. in Guam in '69.
I remember this, because the crew chief there would not allow us to view the moon landing on the tv.
I would like to acknowledge the men who lost their lives in a B-52 at Castle AFB in 1968.
Thanks

J. Garza
In email 12th June 2011 from

I'd appreciate help in tying up the details of the two losses mentioned above - Mike

 

                 
21st January 1969
USAF
B-52H 61‑0037 5 BW
Minot AFB, ND
Incorrect trim selection caused stall on take‑off. Crashed on a farm about a mile from base runway      
           
Maj. Byron D. Edmonds
aircraft commander
killed
1st Lt. Kenneth A. Kuhn
co-pilot
killed
Capt. Gerald J. Walla
navigator
killed
Capt. James C. Jiles
radar navigator
killed
Capt. Richard L. Jones
EWO
killed
Tech. Sgt. Lee A Gunn
gunner
killed
 
 

 

 
                 
8th May 1969
USAF
B-52F 57‑0149 93rd BW Crashed short of runway at Castle AFB, Ca      
 
               
Instructor Pilot, Lt. Col. Pinkney“Pinky” Odeneal
broken collar bone
Student Copilot, Lt. Hoffman student navigator Captain William J “Ace” Kincaid Instructor RN, Major Wood Stand Board Pilot
??
EW student
??
broken wrist
gunner
??
broken back
 
   
  CONFIRMATION OF THIS CREW TO THIS AIRFRAME APPRECIATED
 

My Name is William J “Ace” Kincaid, and I was the student navigator that crashed short of the runway at Castle AFB in mid-1969. I saw your entry of a B-52F crash, Tail 57-0149, August, 05, 1969 with not much data. I’m unsure if that was my accident or another B-52 crash at Castle AFB, a week or two before mine. In that earlier Mather accident, the entire crew died. In my accident, we all survived, with the gunner seriously injured.

Hi Mike:

It was so long ago that I cannot recall specifically when, in 1969, I went through B-52 NBT at Castle AFB. I do remember that crash being my 9th training ride in the B-52F. The accident centers on Student Copilot, Lt. Hoffman, moving an abnormal amount of fuel into the wings, which caused the CG to shift aft big time. On final, our airspeed slowed to where the plane went into “a saber dance” and we rolled slightly nose down into a stalled wing. Our airspeed quickly accelerated in this attitude, which enabled Instructor Pilot, Lt. Col. “Pinky” Odeneal (sp?), to roll wings level just prior to impact in a cotton field. The wings sheared off and the fuselage broke in half, sending the tail, with the gunner, tumbling off to one side. The tail came to rest upside down with him hanging by his straps. I remember my helmet and face mask breaking when the BNS panel collapsed on me. My ejection door sheared off underneath me and my jacket was singed from the flames. The lower compartment immediately filled with dust and smoke, but I and Instructor RN, Major Wood, felt our way up the ladder, ran forward and climbed out the pilot’s overhead hatch, the door of which Lt Col Odeneal, Lt Hoffman and another Stand Board Pilot (whose name escapes me), had just removed. We all climbed out through that pilot overhead hatch, jumped off the nose and assembled a short ways away. Our EW student (again, name escapes me) had broken his wrist, Lt Col Odeneal broke his collar bone and, our gunner (name also forgotten) sadly had a broken back.

 

Like so many other plane accidents, this crash was the result of several mistakes that, when happening in aggregate, result in tragedy. This crash started with two engines being shut down in one pod due to defective oil pressure transmitters. Loss of two engines required mission termination and landing, upon burning down to a max gross weight. Lt Hoffman had just completed an AC-47 pilot tour in Viet Nam, and he recalled an emergency procedure where fuel was moved from the fuselage to the wings prior to landing. Fine for a C-47… big mistake for a B-52. On the other hand, no fuel in the fuselage was the only reason the fuselage, including the crew compartment, did not explode upon impact.

 

I went on to Westover AFB, the 99th BW, where I completed a tour that included two Arc Lite deployments. There were a few more flying incidents in my 27 year career that immediately come to mind, but none more memorable than my 9th B-52 sortie.

Cheers,

Bill “Ace” Kincaid

Hi Mike:

Best I can furnish. Actually, I was a Captain at the time of the crash. Immediately following my 99th BW, Westover AFB B-52D assignment, I cross trained into the RF-4C. I ended up with over 2,500 hours in that plane at several locations, which encompassed pretty much of the rest of my flying career. Pls keep in touch, and thank you for your interest.

Cheers,

Bill “Ace” Kincaid

 

 

 

                 
10th May 1969
USAF
B-52D 56‑0593 509 BW
Andersen AFB, Guam
attached to 4133 BW(P)
Crashed into Pacific Ocean after take‑off      
xx xx xx vwx xx
Capt James L Sipes
Kansas City, MO(KIA)
1 Lt Larry Ivan Broadhead
Edmond, OK
(KIA)
Capt Russell L Platt
Las Cruces, NM(KIA)
1 Lt Maurice Edward "Ed" Lundy
(KIA)
1 Lt Thomas R McCormick
(KIA)
 
MSgt Harold "Harry" B. Deel
Ferndale,MI
(KIA)
FEEDBACK

Attached is a picture of 1Lt. Maurice E. Lundy.  Ed was the navigator on B-52 56-0593 when it crashed on May 10, 1969. 

Maurice (Ed) Lundy and I were classmates and roommates during undergraduate Nav and Nav-Bomb schools.  A true friend and gentleman, who always had a smile on his face.  When it came time to pick assignments after nav-bomb school, he chose Fairchild because of the base’s heavy Vietnam involvement.  

This picture of Ed was taken on the day he received his Navigator Wings. God Bless, Ed.

Please use this information to continue his memory.

Bill Parkinson
in email 2nd May 2009

FEEDBACK

B-52 D 56-0593, 10 May 1969 Anderson, Guam. Harry Deel was my good friend, and roommate. My crew flew this aircraft the day before,and we lost water on lift off and dropped off the cliff, and I had sea mist coming across my Gunner’s canopy before we managed to recover and gain altitude. I still have so many fond memories of Harry, He is missed.

in email 10th March 2011

                 

 

                 
19th July 1969
USAF
B-52D 55‑0676 70 BW
U‑Tapao AB, Thailand
Take‑off' accident      
           
??
survived
??
survived
??
survived
??
survived
??
survived
??
survived

 

                 
27th July 1969
USAF
B-52D 56‑0630 70 BW
Andersen AFB, Guam.
Crashed into Pacific Ocean following failure of starboard wing after take‑off all eight aboard killed    
xx xx xx xx xxx xx
Capt Edward William Wyatt
pilot
KIA
Capt John Anthony Albasio
co-pilot
KIA
Capt Donald Joseph Maccio
Navigator
KIA
Capt Edward Anthony Miskowski
RN
KIA
1 Lt Gary Paul Leach
EWO
KIA
TSgt Clinton Eugene Tibbetts
Gunner
KIA
FEEDBACK

 The aircraft crashed about the time of rotation for takeoff.  It was airborne only briefly.  The official explanation of 'wing failure' is an understatement.  The right wing of the aircraft came off the fuselage--it separated from the bomber about the time it rotated and began to fly. 

Following that crash there was a discreet inspection of the entire fleet of D model B-52's for structural issues involving the wing/fuselage issues arising from this crash.  From that inspection, which took quite a long time, many months during the continued regular usage of the airplanes in bombing missions, several aircraft were deemed not airworthy and were grounded because of structural issues.  This inspection and the subsequent groundings were never publicized to my knowledge.

 

Also, there were six souls on board--the standard crew manning for the aircraft.  The website incorrectly lists more than six fatalities in this crash.This information is submitted based upon my personal knowledge.  I was on Guam at the time of the crash and we flew the next scheduled mission following the Wyatt crash.  My crew served as the honor guard at the memorial service for the Wyatt crew and they were well known to us.  The writer and a couple of others on the crew had the occasion to spend time with Ed Wyatt shortly before his crash.

 

Sincerely

in email 23rd June 2008

 

                 
4th September 1969
21:38

USAF
B-52G
Stratofortress
58‑0215 42 BW
Loring AFB, Me
Training flight. Crashed Multiple engine failure on take‑off at night three miles north of SAC near  Maine, New Brunswick
  Robert Smith and Nils Olaf A. Oxehufwud well
       
Maj. Nils O. A. Oxehufwud
Aircraft Commander
killed
Capt. William N. Payne
Co-pilot
killed
Capt. Theodore A Burbank
Navigator
killed
Maj. Robert M. Murray
EWO
killed
Lt. Col. Robert C. Smith
Radar Officer
killed
M.Sgt. Earl J. Barnes
gunner
killed
Col. Homer C. Bell Jr.
observer
killed
FEEDBACK


Here's a picture of the flight crew from the B-52G that crashed after takeoff from Loring AFB on Sept. 4th 1969 (tail#58-0215).  My Dad was Capt. Theodore A. Burbank, the Bombardier Navigator.  In the picture, he is the 2nd person from the left on the top.  Lt. Col. Robert C. Smith, the Radar Officer is on the top right, but I can't put names to any of the others that are pictured.
 
Beyond the picture, some additional feedback that I could provide is that the aircraft crashed during an ORI (Organizational Readiness Inspection) and that there was some controversy after the crash surrounding whether or not it should have been ordered to take off.
 
Regards
Kevin Wade
in email 23rd June 2008

FEEDBACK

On 4 September 1969, during an ORI, I witnessed the crash of B-52G 58-0215 at Loring AFB as a Sergeant in the Fire Dept working at the Crash Station.

As MITOs* progressed my partner and I stood by in our P-6 pickup about 50 yards in front of the alert bombers. 58-0215 was having dificulties with one or more inboard engines on the port wing, so we were radioed to continue to stand by on that aircraft until it taxied to the south end of the runway. We were then to hustle down to the north end and standby there as they took off. After several failed attempts to start and run up the engine, they finally got it going, or so it appeared. During this time I could see the Aircraft Commander and, I assume, the Wing Commander talking and gesturing to each other. Finally I saw the Wing Commander wave them on...to proceed the south end of the runway, and go.

 At the north end we observed the aircraft approach on it's take off run. As the plane neared us, it lifted off much farther down the runway than normal. As it passed us, the plane struggled to gain altitude. I believe it never gained more than a few hundred feet of altitude. I did not hear any unusual engine noises, just the usual roar.  Finally we observed it slowly disappear beyond the tree line, and after a few silent seconds we heard the inevitable. It was the beginning of a long night.

I was never privy to any official information concerning the accident, but it appeared several ejections were attempted. I do not know the source of the engine(s) problem, or why they were ordered to go, except that it was an ORI**.

One personal thought: I was deeply moved by the loss of those men, and that I was unable to help. That was my job.

Clyde Sikorski
USAF 1966-1974

in email 9th February 2009
*Minimal Interval Take Offs, **
Organizational Readiness Inspection

FEEDBACK

Ref: B-52G 58-0215 accident 4 Sep 1969.

I was assigned to Loring AFB from July 1964 to Sep 1968.  I was in successive order a B-52 Instructor Radar Navigator in the 69th and 70th Bomb Squadrons, 42nd Bomb Wing Navigator, and the 45th Air Division Navigator.  I knew Robert Smith and Nils Olaf A. Oxehufwud well.  Oxe and I were in the same cohort for promotion and he was my neighbor.

The spelling of the Aircraft Commander's last name on the website is OXEHUJWUD it should be OXEHUFWUD ref: 1968 Air Force Register Vol I.  R.C. Smith was the Radar Navigator vice Radar Officer.  In the crew picture I am sure the top left photo is Maj Oxehufwud; however, I left Loring in 1968 for SAC HQs/Operations Plans and it's been 41 years since I last saw him.

Al Malmsten
in email 4th May 2009 

 


 
 

 

 

                 
Thursday 9th October 1969
23:45 PDT

USAF
Boeing B-52F Stratofortress 57‑0172 329th Bomb Squadron

93rd Bomb Wing
SAC
Castle AFB, Atwater, California
Practice touch and go landings. Pitch‑up during overshoot resulted in loss of control. Crashed and burst into flames on one of the runways.
   


via Kristin Keller Gause

     
Capt. Richard F. Beattie
36
Merced, California
instructor pilot
killed
Maj. Boyd Paul Beyer
35
Atwater, California
instructor navigator
killed
Major Doyal Larry Keller*
35
Atwater, California
navigator instructor
killed
[see Feedback below]
Captain Wilber D. Wright
student
killed
1st Lt. Frank D. Harriman
student
killed
2nd Lt. Steven D. Lack
student
killed
FEEDBACK

*This was not Major Keller's usual crew.
". . . I lost my father in the 10/9/69 crash at Castle Air Force Base. The pilot called our pilot and asked if my dad could fill in."

Kristin Keller Gause
Palmetto, Fl
in email 16th February 2012
[If anyone has recollections of Major Keller you can contact Kristin via this web site mbenshar@aol.com and it will be forwarded]

 

 

                 
21st October 1969
USAF
B-52F 57‑0041 93 BW
Castle AFB, Ca.
Landing accident      
 

 

                 
Friday 3rd April 1970
USAF
B-52D 55‑0089 28 BW Ellsworth AFB, SD Landing accident. Caught fire. Skidded into brick storage building containing 25,000 gallons of jet fuel  
All 9 crew escaped unhurt
   
         
Capt Wesley G. Swann, A/C, smoke inhalation Capt Gary C. Christensen, Copilot, fractured breast bone Maj Ralph P. Smiley, Radar Navigator, fractured ankle and ribs, injured vertebrae Capt Curtis L Christy Navigator, leg fracture 1Lt James L. Welch
Electronic Warfare Officer, no injuries
         
Staff Sergeant Charles E Adkins III
Gunner, Chip fracture and burns. Was freed from aircraft by fire truck ramming the tail section to break it loose.
Major Harry D Meehan, Instructor Navigator, dislocated shoulder, leg fracture. He spent 56 minutes in the burning wreckage before being freed. Lt Col Paul R Houser
28th Bomb Wing Chief of Operations, fractured tibia
A1C Randall Hart
avionics maintenance, no injuries
 
FEEDBACK


I have some information and photos of the B-52D crash, Ellsworth AFB, April 1970. I was working that night (actually about 4:30pm) and drove out on the ramp in a staff car when it happened.

I have attached a picture that I took of the fire. The firemen did a fantastic job in saving the crew member who was trapped inside the nose section that had broken off.

As mentioned the fire truck rammed the gun turret, breaking it off and freeing the tail gunner.

Several of the firemen received medals for their heroism in a ceremony in the base theater. I think Gen. Bruce Holloway, CINCSAC, presented the decorations.

Thanks again,

Bob Bercher
MSGT, USAF (ret)
in email 9th March 2012

FEEDBACK
 

". . . I was a kid on the base and my dad was working in the command post that day and says he was the one who had to tell the Wing Commander one of his jets had crashed. I’ve got copies of the Rapid City Journal for 4 and 5 April 1970 so I can nail down the crew for you:

Capt Wesley G. Swann, A/C, smoke inhalation

Capt Gary C. Christensen, Copilot, fractured breast bone

Maj Ralph P. Smiley, Radar Navigator, fractured ankle and ribs, injured vertebrae (coincidentally was my Sunday school teacher)

Capt Curtis L Christy Navigator, leg fracture

1Lt James L. Welch, Electronic Warfare Officer, no injuries

Staff Sergeant Charles E Adkins, Gunner, Chip fracture and burns. Was freed from aircraft by fire truck ramming the tail section to break it loose.

Maj Harry D Meehan, Instructor Navigator, dislocated shoulder, leg fracture. He spent 56 minutes in the burning wreckage before being freed. (coincidentally was a neighbor, played with his kids)

Lt Col Paul R Houser, 28th Bomb Wing Chief of Operations, fractured tibia

A1C Randall Hart, avionics maintenance, no injuries

I became an Air Force pilot later and flew B-52s and B-1s. My dad once told me that the crew had been practicing engine out approaches with one engine actually shut down due to failure. When I flew for SAC, we were not allowed to practice anything with engines out (even if you had 7 left), a result of this accident.

The article also mentions the 11 Feb 1958 crash at Ellsworth. Just adding to your info, Kenneth Kaipler was the Radar Navigator and John O’Connell was the navigator. The aircraft crashed short of the southeast runway and “demolished a small building containing equipment for the instrument landing approach system”. Those killed were A1C Ronald R. Mitchell, A1C James E. Ferrell and Mr. Glen M. Allen (civilian). It mentions six others aboard the airplane were injured as well but gave no details. . .

Jay
in email 9th February 2010

Saw the feedback on B-52 tail number 089 and have no idea what this person who sent additional information is talking about. I was crew chief on that plane and on site when it crashed and throughout the incident. The events were as presented on your web site. No one died, crew, passengers or ground.

 

FEEDBACK

".   .   . I too was there for that B-52 crash at Ellsworth. Ellsworth was my first assignment from 60-70. I worked as a supply personel in the control tower in the basement with the 2029 Com Sq. We took care of the radar and nav aids equipment. We viewed the crash scene from the tower.
Thanks to the heroics of the base fire dept all were saved."

Louis A. Nieves

in emails April 2012

 

                 
19th July 1970
USAF
B-52G 58‑0208  42 BW
Loring AFB, Me
ground fire no ejections    
 

 

                 
7th January 1971
USAF
B-52C Stratofortress 54‑2666 99 BW
346th Bombardment Squadron
Westover Air Force Base, Mass.
Routine training mission. Possible Wing failure. Crashed into Lake Michigan near Charlevoix,  at night No survivors    
 

memorial plaque photo via Rick Wiles

Lt. Col. William Lemmon
AC Pilot
Lt. Douglas Bachman
Co-Pilot
electronic warfare officer
Captain Joel Hirsch
Nav/Bombardier
electronic warfare officer
Captain John Weaver
Nav/Bombardier
Penny Held
(sister of Captain Weaver)
Major Donald F. Rousseau
Extra on board for training flight
Nav/Bombardier
electronic warfare officer
Jennifer Rousseau
Lt. Dennis Ferguson
Extra on board for training flight
Nav/Bombardier
Tech. Sgt. Gerry Achey
gunner
Maj. John Simonly
navigator instructor
Major Gerald Black
Nav/Bombardier
FEEDBACK

". . . Several of the  crew were guys from my old crew, we had flown Arc Light together.  You list the cause as "wing failure".  Would you share with me the source that supports that conclusion?  I left the USAF within a few months after the crash and I never saw the accident report but I always suspected a structural failure of some type.  I can supply you with the names of   those lost in that crash if you wish.
Again, thanks. . ."

Larry Bowers
in emails 1 & 2 September 2009
photos via Larry Bowers

ldbowers@verizon.net      

 

FEEDBACK

". . . My father, Major Donald F. Rousseau,   was killed in a B52 explosion over Lake Michigan on January 7, 1971. 
I discovered your website on the 39th anniversary of his death while   I was searching the internet for information about the accident. I 
saw there were only 2 photos of  crew members and thought it would be nice to honor my father by providing you with his photo. .
Thank you."

Jennifer Westover Rousseau
in email 21st January 2010
photo added 21st January 2010

Jennifer sent the following on 13th January 2012

"
In Oct of 2010, my family and I flew to Charlevoix,MI for the first time together and had the honor of participating in the 40th anniversary memorial service for the crew members. The event took place at the Memorial on the shore of Traverse Bay and was coordinated by Rick Wiles, author of "Fire Ball In the Sky". Rick was instrumental in helping my family to learn about and understand the cause of the accident. We are forever grateful for the gift he has given our family.

These photos are of the rededication Taps played this past Oct 2011 (the date of the 40th anniversary memorial
service was Oct 4, 2010,  the re dedication Taps were played on Oct 4, 2011
.) Bob Esford blew taps in honor of the one year rededication of the Memorial. The wreath was provided by Jackie Burrel of Sky's the Limit, Petosky, MI."

FEEDBACK

I have some info on this Westover AFB 99 BW crew and B-52C 542666.
 
I was a good friend of Bill Lemmon who was killed in that crash. BTW, he was a pilot. He and I had flown as copilots at Ellsworth and Sheppard in the D-model, were upgraded to AC at Sheppard. Later I was reassigned to Westover, long gone by the time he and his family arrived there.
 
At the time of the accident, I was stationed at Carswell in FB-111s. I was called that night by Maj Jim/Smoky Overton who told me the news. I flew to Westover to be with the Lemmon family.
 
My old AC was MA at Kincheloe AFB, Col Vic Sandacz, also a friend of Lemmon's. He led the recovery effort out to Lake Michiigan, and I think served on the accident investigation board. Several ironic coincidences here. He did not know Lemmon was on board 666 until after they gave up the recovery effort.
 
The aircraft was never recovered from those cold dark waters of Lake Michigan. I read the accident report, and it while the board determined the accident was "undetermined," it speculated that the accident was due to wing failure. The airplane was on a low level bomb run on the Iron Man Oil Burner route making a night RBS bomb run. The RBS site reported that communications with the crew and the aircraft route appeared normal until the point at which the crew would execute a "pop-up" maneuver. At that point radar contact was lost. You can draw your own conclusions from there as the board seemed to.
 
Bill Lemmon was superb officer, pilot and husband and father and one of my closest friends. He was re-qualifying in the BUF after tours in SEA and at PACAF. He had just completed CCTS at Castle. I think he was commanding one of the 99 BW squadrons, or was about to.
 
I am still in touch with his family in the Sacramento area.
 
I get choked up writing about my old buddy. RIP, good friend and for the other crewmembers.
 
Steve Fish, USAF retired
in email 23rd November 2009

FEEDBACK

I am indebted to Richard A.  “Rick” Wiles* for providing extra photos of the crew and sharing his researches on this written in,

“Fireball in the Sky”
A 40th Year Commemorative White paper on the January 7th,1971 Tragic Event in Little Traverse Bay Lake, Michigan
January, 2011-01-05 submitted to the Petoskey Public Library, Petoskey, Michigan

More information can be found at the following links
http://www.westoveryesterday.com/InMemoriam.html
http://articles.petoskeynews.com/2009-10-05/lake-michigan_24016911

 *in correspondence throughout 2009  -- 2011

 

The

 

                 
31st March 1972
USAF
B-52D 56‑0625 306 BW
McCoy AFB, Fl.
Fire on board reported. The aircraft was being flown back to the airbase when it suffered multiple engine failure

Crashed near air field 

     
             
Capt. Wendell W. Campbell
30
pilot
killed
Capt. Barry E. Applebee
26
co-pilot
killed
1st Lt. Robert Heatherly
26
navigator
killed
Maj. James J. Hammons
37
radar-bombardier
killed
Maj. William E. Kesler
41
EWO
killed
M.Sgt. Allen H. Murray
53
gunner
killed
Lt. Col. George M. Gamache
42
instructor navigator
killed
AP-A witness to Friday's crash of an Air Force- B-52 bomber into an Orlando residential area said three or four crewmen wrapped in fire parachuted from the ...
Seven Air Force crewmen died and at least eight civilians were injured Friday when a burning B-52 bomber nose-dived into a residential neighborhood and sprayed homes with a sheet of blazing jet fuel.

 

                 
8/5/72
USAF
 B-52G 59‑2574 416 BW
Griffiss AFB, NY
Aquaplaned on landing      
 

 

                 
7th July 1972
or
8th

USAF
B-52G 59‑2600 72 SW(P) Andersen AFB, Guam Mechanical failure after take‑off from. Its radome separated from the airplane Crashed  Pacific Ocean      
             
ejected ejected ejected ejected ejected LtCol James Lloyd Vaughan
RN
ejected but parachute streamed
WAS THERE A 7th Crew MEMBER ??
Two American submarines plucked six crewmen from the Pacific Saturday a day after they had ejected from a U.S. B52 bomber that crashed into the sea, officials said.

 

                 
Sunday 30th July 1972
20:29

USAF
B-52D 56‑0677 307 SW
U-Tapao RTAFB
T
hailand.
Crashed after lightning strike and fire knocked out aircraft instruments. and started a fire in the port wing.      
xx x x x x  
Capt Thomas W Reasor
KIA
Capt Ronald A Ashe
KIA
Maj James E Hudelson
KIA
Capt David J Price
KIA
Capt Joseph L Ruzicka
KIA
Msgt Eugene C Gries
tail gunner
bailed out
survived
 
  • Major James E. Hudelson, Roseburg, OR
  • Capt Ronald A. Ashe, Ansonia, CT
  • Capt David J. Price, Marion, OH
  • Capt Thomas W. Reasor, Evansville, IN
  • Capt Joseph L. Ruzicka, North Augusta
 

While trying to find information regarding my dad and an incident he was in while in the Air Force 38 years ago I came across the B-52 Stratofortress DRAFT LISTING.  Regarding the 30th July 1972 (?? survived) Crashed after lightning strike and fire knocked out aircraft instruments and started a fire in the port wing,  ?? is my  dad, Eugene C Gries Ret Msgt.  Dad was the tail gunner and ejected from the plane, we were very fortunate as he was the only survivor in this crash.   I am happy to say my dad is healthy and living at age 74 in Las Vegas, NV. 

 

Regarding the 30 Jul D model crash out of U-Tapao, the only living witness was the gunner. He is the only person who presented any evidence—testimony or empirical—that there was ever a wing fire as claimed in the report. There were some extremely credible reports, never officially published, that the navigator reached the ground alive, but died of wounds before he could be rescued. The radar navigator crashed with the airplane, apparently never actuating the ejection system on his seat.
in email 18th January 2010

 

15th October 1972
USAF
B‑52D 55‑0097 43rd SW
U‑Tapao RTAFB, Thailand
DBR m crash at the base 6 crew survived an emergency landing names unknown  
           
           

 

first B‑52 to be lost as a direct result of enemy action
22nd November 1972
USAF
B‑52D
`Olive 2'.
55‑0110 307 SW
96th BW attached to 307 SW, USAF, U‑Tapao
hit over North Vietnam,  by SAM near Vinh, North Vietnam Caught fire but made it back to Thailand and crashed 15 M SW of Nakhon Phanom, Thailand crew ejected safely

details ???

   
         
Capt Norbert J Ostrozny
Pilot
ejected
Capt P. A. "Tony" Foley
Co-pilot
ejected
Bud Rech
RN-

survived
Capt Robert Estes
Nav
ejected
Larry Stephens
EWO
ejected
SSgt Ronald W. Sellers
Gunner
ejected
    Crew rescued by HH‑53
 
 

 

18th December 1972
USAF
B-52G
Call­sign "Charcoal 01"
58-0201 340thBS, crew. 97thBW, 72nd SW(P)
Blytheville AFB, AR
Andersen AFB, Guam Crashed near Yen Vien, North Vietnam after being hit by SAM    
 
NR  NR
Captain Richard Thomas Simpson
POW
EWO
Captain Robert Glenn Certain
POW
Navigator
Major Richard Edgar Johnson
POW
Radar Navigator
1st Lt. Robert James Thomas
[Remains Returned]
Co-Pilot
MSgt Walter Lee Ferguson
[Remains Returned]
Gunner
Lt. Col. Donald Louis Rissi
[Remains Returned]
Pilot

 

                 
18th December 1972
USAF
B-52G
"Peach 02"
58‑0246
Call‑sign
2nd BW, 72nd SW(P)
Barksdale AFB, LA
-
Andersen AFB, Guam
Crashed in Thailand after being hit by SAM near Kinh No, North Vietnam Crew bailed out/rescued over Thailand     
             
Maj Cliff Ashley
ejected
survived
Capt Gary Vickers
ejected
survived
Maj Archie Myers
ejected
survived
1Lt Forrest Stegelin
ejected
survived
Capt Jim Tramel
ejected
survived
MSgt Ken Connor
ejected
survived
Lt Col Hendsley Conner
Manual Bail-out
             
Major Clifford B. Ashley
Recovered
Pilot
Capt. Gary L Vickers
Recovered
Co-Pilot
1st Lt. Forrest E. Stegelin
Recovered
Navigator
Major Archie C. Myers
Recovered
Radar Navigator
Capt. James T. Tramel
Recovered
EWO
MSgt. Kenneth E. Connor
Recovered
Gunner
Lt. Col. Hendsley R. Connor
Recovered
Deputy Airborne Commander
 
 
                 
19th December  1972
USAF
B-52D
Call‑sign "Rose 01"
56-0608 99 BW, att to 307 SW, Westover AFB, MA  U-Tapao Crashed in vicinity of Hanoi, North Vietnam after being hit by SAM. Vn Weber
NR NR
pic
Major Fernando Alexander
POW
Radar Navigator
Captain Charles Arthur Brown
POW
Co-Pilot
Captain Henry Charles Barrows
POW
EWO
Captain Hal K. Wilson
POW
Pilot
Captain Richard Waller Cooper
MIA
Navigator
TSgt Charlie Sherman Poole
MIA
Gunner
  I noticed two of the B-52s lost over North Viet Nam had question marks concerning some of the info presented.  I can be of help:

20 Dec 72, B-52D.  The crew was a Westover crew flying Ds out of U-Tapao.

19 Dec 72, B-52D.  Westover S-01 crew shot down the 1st night over Hanoi.  Our crew, Carswell S-01 was #1 spare that night and we them mover into the schedule where Wilson's crew had been.

Dave Davis. RN, Car S-01, Capt at the time, retired Colonel. 
 

 

20th / 21st December 1972
USAF
B‑52G 57‑6481
Call‑sign `Brass 2'
42 BW
Loring AFB, MA
attached to 72 SW(P)
USAF, Andersen
, Guam
Crashed in Thailand after being hit by SAM near Yen Vien, North Vietnam Crew bailed out/rescued over Thailand
????
   
           
Capt John Ettinger
survived
Capt. Lawrence A. Casazza
Recovered
Co-Pilot
Major Charles E. Archie
Recovered
Radar Navigator
1st Lt. Robert A. Clement
Recovered
Navigator
Capt. Silverio A. Barroqueiro
Recovered
EWO

TSgt George H. Schryer
Recovered
Gunner

 

20th December 1972
USAF
B-52D
"Straw 02"
56‑0669 306th BW, 43rd SW
March AFB, CA
  Andersen AFB, Guam   
     

 

     

Capt. Deverl H. Johnson
Recovered
Pilot
1st Lt. James T. Farmer
Recovered
Co-Pilot
Major Frank A. Gould
MIA
Radar Navigator
Capt. Vincent F. Russo
Recovered
Navigator
Capt. Paul J. Fairbanks
Recovered
EWO
TSgt. James R. Barclift
Recovered
Gunner

 

20th December  1972
USAF
B-52D
"Orange 03"
56‑0622 Aircraft from 7 BW
99th BW, 307th SW
Westover AFB, MA
Hit by SAM Crashed near Yen Vien, North Vietnam  U-Tapao, Thailand 99 BW crew  
   

Arlington Cemetry

   
Capt Thomas J. Klomann
POW
Navigator
1st Lt. Paul Louis Granger
POW
Co-Pilot
MSgt Arthur Vincent
McLaughlin
MIA
Gunner
 Captain Irwin Stuart Lerner
MIA
EWO
Major Randolph Allen Perry Jr
MIA
Radar Navigator
Major John Franklin Stuart
MIA
Pilot

 

   
20th December  1972
USAF
B-52G
"Quilt 03"
57-6496 456 BW, att to 72 SW(P), Beale AFB, CA   Andersen AFB, Guam Vn Weber
     
Captain Terry Mercer Geloneck
POW
Pilot
1st Lt. William Youl  Arcuri
POW
Co-Pilot
SSgt Roy Madden Jr
POW
Gunner
1st Lt. Michael Robert
Martini
POW
Navigator
Captain Craig Alan Paul
[Remains Returned]
EWO
Captain Warren Richard Spencer
[Remains Returned]
Radar Navigator


 

21st December 1972
USAF
B-52G
"Olive 01"
58-0198 92nd BW, 72nd SW (P)
Fairchild AFB, WA; Blytheville AFB, AR
Andersen AFB, Guam hit by SAM. Crashed near Kinh No, North Vietnam 92 BW crew  
   
       
Col James Yoshikazu Nagahiro
POW
pilot
RR
A1C Charles "Chuck" James Bebus
KIA
Gunner
NR
Donovan Keith Walters
KIA
co-pilot
NR
Lt. Col. Keith Russell Heggen (remains returned in 1974
Deputy Airborne Commander
POW DIC
KR
Captain Lynn Richard Beens
POW
Navigator
Robert Ray
Lynn
KIA
EWO
NR
Major Edward Harvey Johnson
KIA
Radar Navigator
NR
 
   

 

 

 

21st December 1972
USAF
B-52G
 

Call‑sign "Tan 03"

58-0169

340th Heavy Bombardment Squadron at Blytheville AFB, AR & was 97 BW TDY to the 72nd SW(P) Blytheville AFB, AR Andersen AB, Guam Crashed at Kinh No, North Vietnam after hit by SAM

97 BW crew

Linebacker II
shot-down
Weber Aircraft, Inc.
NR
pic
NR
pic
NR NR
pic
NR
pic
M/Sgt. James Leon Lollar
POW
Gunner
1st Lt. Charles Edward Darr
[MIA]
Navigator
Captain Randall James
Craddock
[Remains Returned]
Pilot
Major Bobby Alexander Kirby
[Remains Returned]
Radar Navigator
Captain George Barry Lockhart
[Remains Returned]
Co-Pilot
Captain Ronald Dwight Perry
[Remains Returned]
EWO

 

                 
21 / 12/72
USAF
B-52D Call‑sign `Straw 2'. 56‑0669 43 SW
Andersen
Aircraft from 306 BW
43 SW, USAF, Andersen
Hit by SAM over Hanoi, North Vietnam. Crashed in Laos Crew bailed out over Laos and recovered    
 
           
Capt Vincent Russo
survive
Maj Frank Alton Gould
Radar / Navigator
KIA
Capt James Farmer
survived
Lt Deverl Johnson
survived

He was killed in the crash of a West Wings Beechcraft C-99, Flight 628, commuter aircraft mid air collision with light aircraft over San Luis Obispo, California on Friday (24th) check ?  August 1984. He had retired from the Air Force ans was the Co-Pilot

??
survived
??
survived
   

 

 

22nd December 1972
USAF
B-52D
"Scarlet 03"

also seen as
`Scarlet 1'.

55‑0061 22nd BW, 307th SW
Aircraft from 96 BW

March AFB, CA
Utapao, Thailand hit by SAM. Crashed near Bach Mai, North Vietnam 22 BW crew Weber
Captain Peter James Giroux
[ejected by Capt Bennett]
POW
pilot
Capt Giroux was released on 12 February due to his severe injuries
 
Capt. Thomas Waring Bennett;
co-pilot (missing);
Captain Peter Paul Camerota
EWO / bombardier
evaded capture until 3rd January 1973
POW
1st Lt. Joseph Bernard Copack Jr.
navigator
Remains Returned
Lt. Col. Gerald William Alley
Remains Returned
MSgt. Louis Edward LeBlanc Jr
tailgunner
POW

 

22nd December 1972
USAF
B-52D
Call‑sign "Blue 01"
55-0050 crew 7th BW, 307th SW
Carswell AFB, TX

Aircraft from 43 SW

Utapao, Thailand Crashed near Bach Mai, North Vietnam after being hit by SAM. 7 BW Linebacker II
Lt Col John Harr  Yuill
POW
Pilot
1st Lt. William Thomas Mayall
POW
Navigator
Lt. Col. William Walter Conlee
POW
EWO
 
Captain David Ian Drummond
POW
Co-Pilot
Lt. Col. Louis Henry Bernasconi
POW
Radar Navigator
SMSgt Gary Lee Morgan
POW
GUNNER

 

26th December 1972
USAF
B-52D
"Ash 01"
56‑0584 22nd BW, 307 SW
Robins AFB, GA; Westover AFB, MA
Utapao, Thailand  hit by SAM at Kinh North Vietnam. Crashed at U‑Tapao AB, Thailand  
x x

x

  x
Captain James Mack Turner
KIA
Pilot
Major Lawrence Jay Marshall
KIA
Navigator
Lt. Col. Donald Arrington Joyner KIA
 - Radar Navigator
1st Lt. Robert Joseph Hymel - Co-Pilot
Recovered
pulled out of wreck
TSgt. Spencer L. Grippin
Recovered
rescued pulled out of wreck
Capt. Roy Tom Tabler
KIA
 - EWO
      LINK    

 

Tuesday 26th December 1972
USAF
B-52D
"Ebony 02"
56‑0674

Aircraft from 96 BW

449th BW, 307th SW
Kincheloe AFB, MI; Seymour Johnson AFB, NC
Utapao, Thailand  Linebacker II, day 8 Crashed near Giap Nhi Rail Yard, North Vietnam after being hit by SAM SA-2  

photo - Nancy Morris Ochs
Captain Robert John Morris Jr.
(remains returned)
Pilot
1st Lt. Duane Paul Vavroch
POW - Navigator
Col Michael Harold. La Beau
POW - Radar Navigator
1st Lt. Robert Markham Hudson
POW - Co-Pilot
SMSgt James Raymond Cook - Gunner
POW
Nutter Jerome Wimbrow III
MIA - EWO

 

                 
27th December 1972
USAF
B-52D
 Call‑sign `Ash 2
[
7th BW air­craft]'
56‑0599 crew 28 BW
  Aircraft from 7 BW
307 SW
USAF, U‑Tapao
Crashed in Thailand after being hit by SAM near U-Tapao Hanoi, North Vietnam Bailed out over Laos    
           
Capt John Mize
pilot
[wounded by shrapnel in the left leg]
ejected
[once Lt William Robinson had bailed out]
Capt Terrence Gruters
ejected
Capt Dennis Anderson
ejected
Capt William North
ejected
Lt William Robinson
ejection seat malfunction
Bailed out manually
TSgt Peter E Whalen
ejected
Picked up by two SAR helicopters about 15 miles southwest of Nakhon Phanom
     

 

     
Capt. John Mize
Recovered
Pilot
1st Lt. William L. Robinson
Recovered
Navigator
Capt. William E. North
Recovered
 - Radar Navigator
Capt. Terrence J. Gruters
Recovered
Co-Pilot
TSgt. Peter E. Whalen
Recovered
Gunner
Capt. Dennis W. Anderson
Recovered
 - EWO

 

 

28th December 1972
USAF
B-52D
Call‑sign Cobalt 01
56-0605 7th BW, 43rd SW
Mather AFB, CA; March AFB, CA
Andersen AFB, Guam
Shot down over Laos. . Hit by SAM Air strike the Trung Quang
rail yards near Hanoi. Linebacker II

Crashed near Trung Quan, North Vietnam

NR

 
Captain Frank D. Lewis
ejected
POW
pilot and aircraft commander
Captain Samuel B. Cusimano
ejected
POW
co-pilot
Allen Louis Johnson
ejected (remains
returned)
Electronic Warfare Officer
Bennie L. Fryer
(remains
returned)
navigator
Killed by SAM explosion
Major James C. Condon
ejected
POW
radar navigator
CMSgt James W. Gough
ejected
POW
gunner

 

                 
Night of 3rd / 4th January 1973

1-4-73

check date


USAF
B-52D "Ruby 02" 55‑0056 307 SW
USAF, U‑Tapao
 Hit by SA2 at Vinh, North Vietnam. Lost two engines, electrical and hydraulic systems. Flown out to sea Crashed in South China Sea. Went feet wet crew bailed out, all rescued by US Navy    
 
         
Lt Col Gerald Wickline
Aircraft Commander
pilot
rescued by a USAF HH‑53
Capt William "Bill" F. Milcarek
Co-Pilot

ejected
survived

rescued by a USAF HH‑53
Capt Myles McTernan
navigator
ejection seat malfunctioned
bailed out through an open hatch. Injured hitting aircraft structure on exit
rescued by a Marine Corps helicopter several hours after the other crew
Maj Roger A. Klingbeil
Radar Navigator

ejected
survived

rescued by a USAF HH‑53
Capt William E. Fergason
EWO

ejected
survived

rescued by a USAF HH‑53
TSGT Carlos S. Killgore
Gunner
 
ejected
survived

rescued by a USAF HH‑53

 
 
 
 

                 
?? ?? ??
USAF
 B-52D 55‑0097 43 SW sustaining crash damage at U‑Tapao AB, Thailand      
 

 

                 
29th March 1973
also seen as
13th January 1973

USAF
B-52D 55‑0116  307 SW
USAF, U‑Tapao
Emergency landing  Da Nang AB, South Vietnam having suffered battle damage during an Arc Light raid on North Vietnam no ejections
aircraft scrapped
   
 
           
           

 

                 
Friday 8th February 1974
USAF
B-52G 58‑0174  744th BS
456 BW
Beale AFB, Ca
Routine nighttime training mission. Multiple engine failure veered off the runway on take‑off, overturned and and caught fire. The plane had been in for repairs and it was reported that the valve had been inspected. But the behaviour of the plane in turning and crashing was not inconsistent with a fuel valve failure shutting off fuel to one wing of the plane.
         
 Capt. Paul J. Baldy
29
initially survived but died several days later of
serious burns
pilot
Lt. Neal D. Kass
26
Orange, NJ
co-pilot
killed
Major Toney Val Peter
36
Goodland, KS
navigator
killed
Capt. Lee F. Knudson
27
Oregon City, OR
EWO
killed
Capt. Thomas E. Cannon
25
Newark, NJ
navigator
killed
Sgt. James W. Troutman
33
Grand Coulee, WA
tail gunner
killed
           
???
killed
Capt. Michael W. Forster
29
IP
Stockton, CA
killed
       

FEEDBACK

My daddy was Major Toney Val Peter. 38 years ago today, he died when his B52 Bomber went down on takeoff at Beale AFB in California.

I was quite surprised today when I found your website with a reference to him.

As a child, I read the official report on the B52 crash which was given to the families. To the best of my recollection, a fuel valve had been reported as malfunctioning on a flight earlier that month. The plane had been in for repairs and it was reported that the valve had been inspected. But the behaviour of the plane in turning and crashing was not inconsistent with a fuel valve failure shutting off fuel to one wing of the plane.

 Please post this picture of my daddy on your website—it was taken a few months before he died.

 Thank you for remembering all these men we’we lost in the name of freedom,

Katrina Peter
in email 8th February 2011

 

FEEDBACK

I was reading through your pages relative to the crash that my brother was involved in and died in back in 1974 at Beale Air Force Base, California,  It was the B52. This is a small point but his middle initial was J. not L.  Also he did die several days later. He has received 3rd degree burns over 95 percent of his body.
Thank You
John Baldy
in email 16th November 2008
[entry amended 17th November 2008]

FEEDBACK


Friday 8 February 1974 - A USAF B-52G-95-BW, 58-0174, of the 744th BS, 456th BW, based at Beale AFB, CA., veered off the runway during a night take-off for a routine training flight, and skidded 1,500 feet through a muddy field, before it flipped over and was destroyed by four massive explosions and the fire that ensued.

Seven of the eight crewmen aboard were killed. The sole survivor was Capt. Paul L. Baldy, 29, of Yuba City, CA. who was apparently thrown free of the wreckage before the bomber came to a halt. He was the aircraft's first pilot.

The plane had been in flight for two hours on a routine training mission, and had landed to take aboard an extra crewman, Capt. Michael W. Forster, 29, Stockton, CA., as an instruction pilot.  He was to give Baldy a proficiency check-ride to certify him as a B-52 pilot. Baldy had flown missions in Southeast Asia as a co-pilot.

The six other victims were: Regular co-pilot - Lt. Neal D. Kass, 26, Orange, NJ., Navigator - Maj. Toney V. Peter, 36, Goodland, KS., Electronic Warfare Officer - Capt. Lee F. Knudson, 27, Oregon City, OR., Navigator - Capt. Thomas E. Cannon, 25, Newark, NJ., Tail-gunner - Sgt. James W. Troutman, 33, Grand Coulee, WA., Unknown - sixth victim's identity was being withheld pending notification of next of kin.

Capt. Baldy was flown to Brooks AFB Medical Center in San Antonio, TX., for treatment of severe burns

The B-52 made a routine takeoff roll, lifted off and then veered towards the field where it struck and skidded. The wing fuel tanks evidentially caught fire triggering the explosions.  The plane flipped over and was destroyed, only the tail section remaining intact. Melted steel debris was scattered over a 500-yard area, and chunks of engine were thrown hundreds of feet by the force of the blasts.  There were no weapons aboard.

The plane was heading for a base trailer park where about 30 families live before it was destroyed by explosions.

"The plane lifted off and suddenly veered to one side, ran into the field, and exploded," an unidentified airman witness told authorities. "It was like a great big mushroom."

By Saturday, 9 February, only one body had been recovered - that of Capt. Lee F. Knudsen, who lived on base.  The other six are presumed dead

"We are presuming them dead," said Maj. Tom Maypole, a spokesman for Beale AFB, 35 miles northeast of Sacramento.  "We cannot declare them officially dead because we have not yet found their bodies."

Cause of the crash is under investigation, but no conclusion is expected for weeks.

 - - - Compiled by me* as a high-schooler from reports in the Playground Daily News, Fort Walton Beach, FL., Sunday 10 February 1974, page 1-A, and Monday, 11 February 1974, page 1-A; and the Pensacola News-Journal, Pensacola, FL., Sunday 10 February 1974, page 10-A.

Best regards!

*Mark Sublette
in email 2nd August 2008
 

 

                 
30th May 1974
USAF
B-52H 60‑0006 17 BW
Wright‑Patterson AFB, Oh
Rudder and elevator failure caused loss of control      
 

 

                 
12th December 1974
USAF
B-52D Stratofortress 55‑0058
c/n
464010
43 SW
Andersen AFB, Guam

Instrument malfunction, followed by loss of control and structural failure on approach to Guam 25 miles southeast of air base.

Four of six killed
names appreciated
   
 
         
John Y. Whitley
AC
missing presumed killed
Captain Jack Watson
co-pilot
survived
Lieutenant Brad Buske
navigator
survived
Captain Stephen "Steve" R. Roseman
90th Bomb Squadron
missing presumed killed
Tech. Sgt. [?]Robert W. Nemeth
gunner
missing presumed killed
Captain Leroy E. Pitman
missing presumed killed
FEEDBACK

Regarding the entry on B-52D 55-0058, 12 Dec 74.

The Nav's name is Brad Buske and he was a Lieutenant at the time.  He and Capt Jack Watson were the survivors.  You can find Brad through his wife Doris on Facebook.  Nemeth was the gunner.  I think he was a Master Sergeant.  Whitley, the AC, was a Captain.

Rod Beard
in email 7th May 2013

FEEDBACK

"   .   .   .   55-0058 was hit by three SAMs on Jan 13/14 1974 over N Vietnam. It got back to UT and finally crashed off Guam several years later. This was the last A/C hit by SAMs in the war."

Jack L. Attebury
in email 12th December 2011

 

"I was stationed at Andersen AFB when this crash happened, and participated in a SAR mission. The RN, Capt. Leroy Pitman, was a very good friend. After many, many hours in the flight simulator, the CP recalled the situation moments before things went to hell. They were returning to Andersen at night, and at some point, the attitude gyro began precessing so slightly that the pilots were unaware of the malfunction. Trying to keep the gyro centered, the crew didn't realize the magnitude of the problem until the acft was in such a steep bank that it would no longer fly and crashed into the ocean. If the crew had had an indication early enough, an alternate, independent attitude gyro was available in the RN's optical bomb sight. An entire wing was found and was being towed to shore when the tow cables broke and the wing sank and was lost."

Alan Kirby
Granite Shoals, TX
in email 18th April 2012

 
MY FATHER WAS A TSGT. HE WAS A GUNNER B-52 AIRCRAFT.HE WAS WITH THE 60 BOMB SQ. HIS PLANE WENT DOWN 25 MILES SW OF ANDERSEN AFB GUAM ON DEC. 12,1974. HE WAS WITH THE 34TH BOMBARDMENT SQUADRON,17TH BOMBARDMENT STRATEGIC AIR COMMAND WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE,OHIO,FROM 23 AUGUST 1971 TO 10 JUNE 1974. B-52 GUNNER 307TH STRATEGIC WING,U-TAPAO AIRFEILD THAILAND,ON 18 DEC 1972. I JUST WANTED TO SEE IF ANYBODY REMEMBERS THE ACCIDENT OR MAYBE NEW MY DAD....GOD BLESS THOSE WHO FIGHT FOR OUR FREEDOM.....SINCERELY ROBERT P. NEMETH

 

Awesome plane. My Dad Robert W. Nemeth and 3 other men Leroy E. Pitman, Stephen R. Roseman and John Y. Whitley were presumed missing.The pilot and co pilot were the ony 2 survivors.It happened on Dec.12 1974.It happened in guam.Does anybody else remember? Does anybody have any information ? please get in touch with me if so.
Sincerely Robert P. Nemeth

Narrative:
Instrument malfunction, followed by loss of control a& structural failure. Aircraft dived into the Pacific Ocean 7 miles south east of Andersen AFB, Guam.

"They were returning to Andersen at night, and at some point, the attitude gyro began processing so slightly that the pilots were unaware of the malfunction. Trying to keep the gyro centered, the crew didn't realize the magnitude of the problem until the aircraft was in such a steep bank that it would no longer fly and crashed into the ocean. If the crew had had an indication early enough, an alternate, independent attitude gyro was available in the RN's optical bomb sight. An entire wing was found and was being towed to shore when the tow cables broke and the wing sank and was lost."

Crew of 55-0058:
Jack Watson (co-pilot) - survived
Captain Stephen R. Roseman (90th Bomb Squadron) - missing presumed killed
Robert W. Nemeth - missing presumed killed
Captain Leroy E. Pitman - missing presumed killed
John Y. Whitley - missing presumed killed

According to Ammie Roseman, daughter of pilot Steve Roseman:

1. Aircraft experienced electrical issues prior to takeoff but those were resolved.
2. Nearing the end of a routine training flight Steve did a “star shot” as a training evolution.
3. Doing the star shot required Steve to leave his seat and go to a sextant
4. Pilots were descending on approach as he finished the shot but they were still above 20,000’ altitude and well south of Guam.
5. Electrical problems resurfaced and the pilot lost his attitude direction indicator (ADI) in the descent.
6. Copilot saw 60 degrees of bank and 30 degrees nose down and they were “coming out of the sky” when the aircraft broke out of a mid-deck layer of clouds.
7. Pilot said I have lost control and ordered bailout.
8. Steve was probably not able to regain his seat to eject during this rapidly deteriorating situation and if he did he likely ejected out of the envelop.
9. Pilot was known to have said he would “never eject” so he rode it in.
10. According to witnesses – the B-52 was within 7-miles of Guam at impact – the aircraft leveled somewhat and hit the water wings level, bounced and then went-in – and that squares with the pilot remaining at the controls.

This is sketchy but it makes a certain amount of sense to me. The long and short of it seems to be that Steve was out of his seat at the wrong time and the extreme attitudes the aircraft got to probably prevented him from getting back to it at the moment of crisis. Without knowing more about the B-52 electrical system it is hard to judge but it seems to me the pilot lost situational awareness at a critical time and an inexperienced copilot was (understandably) unable to salvage the day and/or unwilling to override the boss & take control. So we lost our friend to the classic unbroken chain of cascading events.

 
Robert P. Nemeth, Bobertnem=aol.com

 

                 
25th February 1975
USAF
 Boeing B52 D Stratofortress 55079 UTapio, Thailand
out of Dyess AFB on TDY
hot brake accident      
           
Bill McClurg Jerry Gossner Jerry Sheehan Ernie Garza Dick Divis Bob Felton
 

On February 25, 1975, our B-52D, Acft No. 55-079, had a hot brake incident at U-Tapio, Thailand.

As we launched down the runway for the first time and reached S1 air speed requirements, we aborted due to hot brakes.   We came around on the taxiway, and maintenance inspected the brakes and gave us OK status on them.   We launched again for the second time, but when we arrived at S2 air speed requirements, we developed hot brakes again and could not get the air speed to make it as an air abort.  The pilots called out that we are going to make it a ground abort.  We used up the two mile runway and 400 feet of the overrun before we came to a complete.  As we discussed the event, fire trucks came  to the aircraft to put out the fires on the tires and/or hot brakes.  Since aircraft brakes were destroyed at the overrun, they could not be inspected later for probable cause of the accident.   The black box tape was reviewed, and all switches and action items were correctly taken by the air crew.  The cause of the accident was unknown, and neither maintenance or air crew was faulted.

Our crew, E-10, members were as follows:  Bill McClurg, Jerry Gossner, Jerry Sheehan, Ernie Garza, Dick Divis and Bob Felton.

Dick Divis
in emails March 2009

CAN YOU HELP ? All the crew walked away from the mishap.
Dick Divis is trying to locate a copy of the mishap report to add to his history files for his family. He also wants to clarify the correct crew names  Can anyone help with this. If so please contact him either through this site mbenshar@aol.com  or direct dickiedee77@cableone.net
                 

 

                 
3rd September 1975
USAF
B-52G 57‑6493 68 BW
Seymour Johnson Air Base, North Carolina
Fuel leak experienced in starboard outer wing. Expoded in flight. Crashed near Williston, SC Capt. James A. Perry
survived
   
Capt. Donald Exum
survived
   
Capt. Gregory A. Watts
survived
   
2nd Lt. Hector M. Marquez
survived
   
Sgt. Ricky K. Griffith
missing
   
1st Lt. Melvin M. Bewley
missing
   
1st Lt Grady E. Rudolph
killed
body found in wreck
   
 

 

                 
14th November 1975
USAF
B-52H 61‑0033 5 BW
Minot AFB, ND
Burnt out on ground caused when boost pump in tank ignited fuel no ejections    
 

 

                 
Saturday 1st April 1977
USAF
B-52H 60‑0039 410 BW
K I Sawyer AFB, Mi
Flew into ground on approach for landing in storm, Michigan All eight crew on board were killed
 
               
Capt. James B. Cosgrave
killed
Co-pilot 1st Lt. Gary Lee Hudson
[also seen as Captain - was this a posthumous rank award?]
29
Boulder, Colorado
killed
Capt(?) Chris Morrill
killed
Captain Lawrence Fitch Kraut
30
Galena, Illinois
Radar Navigator
killed
Major James F. Bartsch
39
Springdale, Arkansas
EW
killed
Captain Dennis Wilton Soerens
[
Socrens ??]
27
Hingham, Wisconsin
Radar Navigator
killed
M.Sgt. John William Moore
Tail Gunner
killed
Capt. Pat Shortell
see FEEDBACK from Finn Ostman below
FEEDBACK

"A B-52 Statofortress returning to base on a training flight crashed late Friday, killing all eight crewmen in a blinding explosion that lit up the sky like "broad daylight."

FEEDBACK

Ref:  1/4/77
USAF B-52H 60‑0039 410 BW
K I Sawyer AFB, Mi Flew into ground on approach for landing

Aboard this aircraft, and killed in the crash, was Capt(?) Chris Morrill, a fraternity brother from Hamden, CT, who I knew well at Parks Air College, from which he graduated 1973.

Thanks for posting that page.

Gerry Visel
Winnebago, IL
in email 19th July 2008

FEEDBACK

". . .  Concerning the B-52H crash of 1 Apr 1977 at KI Sawyer AFB.  On board was a very close friend and fellow tail gunner, SMS William Moore, whom I believe hailed from Tennessee.  Bill had flown many missions during the Christmas war over Hanoi/Haiphong, and to be killed in this manner (no one read the radar altimeter of which 4 crewmembers had access, and the pilot, who had had the runway in site initially, lost it in the clouds and keyed in instead on a sloping cloud deck that moved in between the Buff and the runway.  What he thought was straight and level flight, based on reflections of the landing lights off the clouds, was in fact a very great rate of decent)   Another fellow on board was Capt. Pat Shortell, who was on my crew as a navigator.  He was trying to upgrade to radar nav, and went on this flight to get flying time under the supervision of the base's S-01 instructor radar nav, despite having just served his week on alert and being entitiled to a 4 day "C squared" weekend.  I believe there were 8 total souls on board who were killed."

Finn Ostman
SSgt USAF 1972-79.
in email 19th December 2009

FEEDBACK

B-52 H 60-0039, 1 April 1977, KI Sawyer. This was my S01 crew, MSgt William (Fiddling Bill) took my place as I was DNIF [Duty Not Involving Flying] at the time. Bill had just returned from courier duty, and this was to be his solo flight. He was a great Fiddle player and had played with some big artists. Missing from your list was Co-pilot 1st Lt Gary Lee Hudson, and Major James F. Bartsch, EW who I had known and crewed with over the years. The phone rang in early morning, and my mother-in-law asked me how I could be answering the phone when she was notified we had crashed. Telling Bill’s wife Ginny he wouldn’t be coming home was traumatic and Survivor Guilt is a lot to bear.

in email 10th March 2011

FEEDBACK

Lost in the accident was James F. Bartsch.  Jim was a true professional, eager to fulfill the Air Force’s mission, whatever it might be, and fearless in combat.  He was my EWO in the Wild Weasel III program flying in the back seat of an F-105F model, from April 1967-January 1968, 100 missions over NVN.  His skill at detecting enemy SAM and radar sites was crucial to our survival back then and he never flinched whenever we were attacked.  His voice might go up, and that was a clear sign for us to fly lower and faster.  He spent hours studying enemy defenses and gained the support of many enlisted men in the weapons and photography sections at Korat.  We lost a fine man and a true professional back in 1977, only 18 months before he was to retire.  The Air Force lost a great officer and teacher.  

Dick Arnold
in email 3rd April 2011

 

 

                 
Thursday
19th October 1978

07:30

USAF
B-52D 56‑0594 22 BW
March AFB, Ca
Crashed about two miles south‑east of base after take‑off. Riverside, Calif. Five crewmen were killed and a tail gunner was injured    
           
Major William Vankeuren Parkell
36
Pilot
killed
Captain Robert C. Mitchell
29
Co-pilot
killed
Captain Michael J. McReedy
32
killed
1st Lt. Robert Tuminello
26
killed
Captain Russell T. Maynard Jr.
27
killed
M.Sgt. Joseph Packey
Tail Gunner
injured
 

 

                 
19th August 1980
USAF
B-52G 58‑0209 19 BW
Robins AFB, Ga
Ground fire no ejections    
 

 

                 
Friday 30th October  1981
date corrected

USAF
B-52D Stratofortress 55‑0078 2nd Bomb Squadron
22 Bomb Wing
March Air Force Base in southern California
On low‑level route during night mission simulating a bombing run. It was flying about 400 feet altitude just before it crashed into the south-eastern Colorado prairie, when it struck a 20-foot sand dune about nine miles east of La Junta. Crew of 8 Killed
 
               
Capt. James L. MacGregor
31
Chowchilla, Calif.
killed
Capt. Gani Aydoner
30
Kaysville, Utah
killed
Capt. Clifford R. Duane
36
San Bernardino, Calif
killed
First Lieut. Kendall E. Wallace
25
Laguna Beach, Calif
killed
Capt. Stanley H. Eddleman
28
Sparta, Ill
killed
Senior Airman Timothy E. McFarland
23
Tucson, Ariz
killed
Airman 1st Class Bruce E. Schaefer
22
Beloit, Wis
killed
Airman 1st Class David W. Smith
20
Pasadena, Tex
killed
Pilot Co-pilot Radar Navigator Navigator Electronic Warfare Officer (EWO) Tail Gunner  Crew Chief  Crew Chief
FEEDBACK

On the crash of the B-52D at La Junta on 31 October 81.  As to crew positions:  Clifford Duane was the Radar Navigator, Kendall Wallace was the Navigator, Stan Eddleman was the Electronic Warfare Officer (EWO), and Tim McFarland was the tail gunner.  Bruce Schaefer and David Smith were crew chiefs.  The airplane was on a "crew diversity" mission wherein they were flying a training mission from March AFB and landing at Carswell AFB (intended) to stay for the weekend.  We brought our own crew chiefs to help minimize the impact at the destination base.  The crew was part of the 2nd Bomb Squadron, 22 Bomb Wing out of March AFB, California.  I was a copilot there at the time and personally knew all of the aircrew members.  A very sad day.

Larry Haskell
in email 19th September 2013
entry amended 22nd September 2013

 

                 

 

                 
?? ?? 1982
USAF
B-52D-30-BW 56-0662 Carswell Air Force Base in Fort Worth Texas ground fire when leaking liquid oxygen mixed with leaking hydraulic fluid and was ignited by an electrical spark      
 

 [ note: c/n 464,033 dynamited 04.84 Carswell AFB ?????]

FEEDBACK

I didn't see mention of B-52D 56-0662 on your hull loss web page. 662 was lost in 1982 at Carswell Air Force Base in Fort Worth Texas, due to ground fire when leaking liquid oxygen mixed with leaking hydraulic fluid and was ignited by an electrical spark.

 The leak was from the direct reading LOX Gage in the cockpit, and I believe that there were also direct reading hydraulic gages as well. Pure oxygen and any kind of petroleum product ignite spontaneously in contact.

 The aircraft was serviced with liquid oxygen but the gage indicated zero. It was written up in the 781 maintenance log and a gage put on order. The leaking O2 line was never capped off, to the best of my recollection. Later that day an electrician was trouble shooting a lighting short-circuit in the cockpit. When he reset the circuit breaker as part of his trouble shooting, a spark ignited the leaking O2 / hydaulic fluid mix and it went off literally like a cutting torch.

The pressurized LOX tank kept the fire fed so the fire department could NOT put the fire out. The rocket like flames, blowing like a blow torch were emanating from the cockpit left-hand side console, and hitting the forward instrument panel and then bouncing OFF of the forward instrument panel and hitting the overhead switch panel over the co-pilot's seat. The electrician barely escaped with his life, racing down-stairs ahead of the flame front. He was young and QUICK !  The rocket plume eventually burned THROUGH the instrument panel and all the way through the side of the cockpit.

Then a quick thinking maintenance supervisor had the presence of mind to finally depressurize the LOX converter at the back of the plane, and the fire fighters could finally put out the fire. The plane was beyond reasonable cost of repair. They towed it off into the grass by the runway where Russian satellites could see it so it could be counted off of the S.A.L.T. Treaty. Later in 1983 I think, it was cut up right there on the spot by a salvage company using a guillotine type heavy blade . That was the end of 56-0662. 

 56-0662 had some sort of interesting history. I was told that it was used to test the first original laser guided bombs....so called "smart bombs". The motto was, "One bridge, one bomb." I'm not sure whether they used 662 at Edwards or on actual bomb-runs over Vietnam. For testing purposes, it had camera mounts added to it in the bomb-bay, in each inboard pylon looking at the bomb-bay, and I think it also had fuselage camera mounts that had a view of the external stores pylon also. The camera mounts always caught the pilots off guard. They thought that a panel had been left off of the aircraft, but it was really just a cut-out for the camera lens. Maybe someone who knows more about 662 or the history of the smart-bomb can comment on this.

Sincerely,

Jack Needy


 

 

                 
29th November 1982
USAF
B-52G 59‑2597 93 BW
Castle AFB, Ca
Post‑landing fire in hydraulic system. Burnt‑out on ground. no ejections    
 

 

                 
Thursday 16th December 1982

not as previously listed the 17th


USAF
Boeing B-52G Stratofortress 57‑6482 328 BS or 4017th CCTS  (Combat Crew Training Squadron) 93 BW
Mather AFB,
SACRAMENTO, Ca.
Power loss on take‑off crashed in a muddy field and exploded All crew were killed    
                 
Major James Henry YORK
43
South Bend, Ind., the aircraft commander
Capt. Lyle Allen BRUNNER
32
Florence, Mont.,  Instructor Radar Navigator
Capt. Dennis Earl DAVIS
Hililsboro, Ore.,
Instructor Electronic Warfare Officer
Master Sgt. Gere E. LeFEVER
42
Conestoga, Pa., an aircraft gunner
2nd Lt. Scott A. SEMMEL
23
Levittown, Pa., a student co-pilot
2nd Lt. Peter M. RILEY
Woonsocket, R. I., a student co-pilot
2nd Lt. Richard P. ROBESON, JR.
27
Freeport, Ill., a student navigator
2nd Lt. Benjamin C. BERNDT
24
Norwalk, Conn., a student navigator
2nd Lt. Daniel N. BADER
25
Salt Lake City, Utah, a student navigator

Sir,

I would like to clarify the ratings of two crewmembers involved the Thursday 16 December 1982 B-52G accident at Mather AFB, CA.  Both aircraft and crews involved in this accident were assigned to the 328 BS
or 4017th CCTS  (Combat Crew Training Squadron) flying out of Mather due to the damage to the runway sustained on 29 November B-52 G (59-2597) aircraft fire at Castle AFB.   CCTS flight operations had been
transferred to Mather until the damage aircraft removed and runway repairs were completed.  These details do not diminish the losses experienced by the families and friends of these fine airmen. 

    Capt. Dennis Davis was an Instructor Electronic Warfare Officer

    Capt. Lyle A Brunner was an Instructor Radar Navigator

both were rated Navigators.

We were all stationed and flown together at Loring AFB, ME and Castle AFB.

Respectfully,
Francis X. Kelley Jr, Lt. Col., USAF, (retired)
in email 11th April 2013
details amended 11th April 2013

 

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - An Air Force B-52 bomber crashed in a muddy field and exploded today just after taking off on a training flight, killing all nine crewmen.

Witnesses sad the pilot steered the plane away from buildings where more people might have died. No one was injured on the ground. The bomber carried no nuclear weapons or other ammunition, according to Col. Gobel James, commander of Mather Air Force Base, where the bomber took off. Some B-52's stationed at the base do.

''There was no communication between the pilot and the ground that he had any problem in the period between the takeoff and the crash,'' Colonel James said.

He said an Air Force team has begun an inquiry into the cause of the crash, which was expected to take about two weeks. Colonel James said the bomber and another like it were on a routine training mission, practicing what the Air Force calls ''minimal interval takeoffs,'' as they would in a war alert.

The bomber that crashed was the second of the pair, a base officer said.

Here's a little extra info on the Mather AFB, Ca crash that occurred on17 Dec 82.

The aircraft was on a training mission that normally would have occurred at Castle AFB, Ca. However, there was another crash at Castle during the previous month that put the runway out of action for some time. The crews were transported 100 miles north to Mather to continue their flight training.

This incident involved two of Castle's training aircraft. They took off as a MITO (Minimum Interval Take Off) The lead aircraft was a B-52 H with TF-33 fan jet engines. The #2 aircraft was a B-52G with J-57 turbojet engines. Normally, the turbofan engine generates about 5000 pounds more thrust than the J-57 and that is why the H-Model went first. But in this instance, the G-Model was using water injection which causes the J-57 to meet or exceed the thrust of a TF-33. 1200 gals of demineralized water is injected at two points into the engines and is used up in less than to minutes. This fact was not taken into consideration during the planning of this mission as the previously explained issue rarely , if ever, actually occurred. However, in this instance it did. After liftoff, the G-Model quickly began overtaking the H-Model. To prevent collision, the student pilot retarded the throttles without giving consideration to the water injection being used. This should have not have mattered as the water injection system is supposed to cut out automatically when the throttles are reduced beyond a certain point as the engines cannot tolerate that much water at a less than optimum power setting. Due to a malfunction, the water did NOT shut off and the engines were unable tocope with it. They began flaming out. The aircraft was nearly at it's max gross weight of 250 tons and there was was not enough altitude to recover, that soon after take off.

The following is a list of the crew members involved.

Maj. JAMES H. YORK, 43, South Bend, Ind., the aircraft commander.
Capt. LYLE A. BRUNNER, 32, Florence, Mont., a bombardier instructor.
Capt. DENNIS E. DAVIS, Hililsboro, Ore., a navigator.
Master Sgt. GERE E. LeFEVER, 42, Conestoga, Pa., an aircraft gunner.
2nd Lt. SCOTT A. SEMMEL, 23, Levittown, Pa., a student co-pilot.
2nd Lt. PETER M. RILEY, Woonsocket, R. I., a sudent co-pilot.
2nd Lt. RICHARD P. ROBESON, JR., 27, Freeport, Ill., a student navigator.
2nd Lt. BENJAMIN C. BERNDT, 24, Norwalk, Conn., a student navigator.
2nd Lt. DANIEL N. BADER, 25, Salt Lake City, Utah, a student navigator

I knew and flew with Lyle Brunner at Fairchild AFB, WA. He was a giant Teddy Bear of a man and not a sweeter soul had ever graced the lower deck of a B-52. He was excellent at his job and therefore selected to be an instructor at Castle.

Sincerely,

Jeff Noecker, Msgt, USAF, Retired
in email 9th December 2011

 

 

                 
27/ 1 /83
USAF
B-52G 57‑6507 319 BW Ground fire during fuel cell maintenance. Grand Forks AFB, ND no ejections    
 

 

                 
11th April 1983
USAF
B-52G 58‑0161
"
LURE 75"
19 BW
Strategic Air Command.
Robbins AFB, Georgia
Flew into ground on Red Flag mission. Crashed 20 miles north of St George, Ut. All crew were killed    
 
             
Capt. Donald W. Hiebert
Pilot
1st.Lt. Thomas C. Lennep Jr
Co-Pilot
Capt. Jonathan M. Bishop
Radar Navigator
 
1st.Lt. Matthew W. Cervenak
Navigator
1st.Lt. Bernard S. Russell
Electronic Warfare Officer
Col. Caroll D. Gunther
Pilot/Safety Observer
SSgt. Major Carter
Gunner
LINK
FEEDBACK

Col. "Bud" Gunther was the BMW/DO. The mission included night mountainous low level TA. Final conclusion was that the TA radar became so degraded that it was unusable. Crashed approx 100' below the top of a mountain peak. The mountain was so steep that recovery teams were helicoptered to summit, then rapelled down to crash site. Largest piece of acft recovered was a wheel strut. Unknown why the crew didn't abort TA and climb to IFR altitude.

Alan Kirby
in email 2nd April 2012

   
   
 

 

16/17th October 1984
USAF
B-52G Stratofortress 57‑6479
Swoon 2
92 BW
Fairfield AFB
Washington

92nd BW
Scott Air Force Base in Illinois
CONFIRM

Flew into ground during night low‑level mission, hit top of a ridge during low‑level training flight and broke apart. Crashed into Hunt's Mesa on the Navajo reservation in northeastern Arizona 13 miles NE  at Kayenta, AZ, USA
Survivors were picked up by helicopter
Monument Valley
 
         
Capt. Robert L. Keeney
pilot
ejected
Lieut. Douglas J. Schwartz
co-pilot
ejected
Lieut. Kenneth O. Portis
navigator
ejected
Maj. Eugene J. Daspit
radar navigator
ejected
Capt. Sean M. Yeronick
electronics weapons systems operator
ejected
Col. William L. Ivy
observer
deputy commander for operations of the 92nd Bombardment Wing
killed
Sgt. David W. Felix
gunner
ejected
parachute failed to deploy, hit rock on landing
killed

 

28th December 1984
USAF
B-52G Stratofortress 57-6484
[confirm]
Loring AFB Crashed on take off at the end of the runway into snow and mud.      
 
             
            Jim D. Porter
Tail Gunner
egressed on ground
OK
                 
7th October 1987
USAF
B-52G Stratofortress 57-6484
[confirm]
Andersen Air Force Base, Agana, Guam Practicing touch-and-go landings. Several small-calibre bullets fired into the plane by a sniper on the ground disabled a steering gear All crew OK    
FEEDBACK

I believe research will verify that the aircraft involved in this incident was B-52G 57-6484

This aircraft was also involved in an accident on take off from Loring AFB in which the forward landing gear retracted prior to attaining take off speed. The aircraft went off the end of the runway, did not burn but suffered major structural damage. The crew survived and the aircraft was field repaired by Boeing and I think the repair took approximately 15 months.

Don Warhurst SMSgt Ret.
Melbourne, Fl
in email 27th May 2013

 
 
.
 
 

 

                 
Thursday 11th February 1988
USAF
B-52G 58‑0219 93 BW
Castle AFB, Ca.
Aborted take‑off. Overran runway, crash landed and destroyed No injuries were reported    
 
 

 

60‑0040

6th December 1988
USAF
Boeing B-52H
Stratofortress
60‑0040
"
The Black Widow"
410 BW
K I Sawyer AFB, Mi
Crashed during a training flight. Exploded during touch‑and‑go approach
All crew survived
Further Details
 
             
Capt. Mark Hartney
AC
1Lt Michael "Mike" Debruzzi
Co-pilot
Maj. Will Kroeger
IP
Capt A. Derral Phillips
Radar Navigator
1Lt Jim Hermann
Navigator
1Lt Dan McCarrick
EWO
A1C Joe Vallie
gunner
1Lt Greg Smith
10th man extra Co-pilot
   

 

                 
24th July 1989
USAF
B-52G 58‑0190 2 BW
Kelly AFB, San Antonio, Texas
Ground explosion and fire during depot maintenance no ejections

one worker killed and 11 injured

   

 

                 
3rd February 1991
USAF
B-52G Stratofortress 59‑2593 4300 BW(P) Desert Storm mission. technical fault. Crashed into Indian Ocean  13 miles north of the island of Diego Garcia      
         
ejected, rescued alive from water taken to Diego Garcia ejected, rescued alive from water taken to Diego Garcia ejected, rescued alive from water taken to Diego Garcia
Radar Navigator / Bombardier
[see FEEDBACKs below]
 Captain Jon Jeffrey Olson ejected below safe ejection minimum altitude killed
Body Not Recovered - MIA
Navigator
1st Lt. Jorge I. Arteaga
ejected below safe ejection minimum altitude killed
Body Not Recovered - MIA
EWO
1st Lt. Eric D. Hedeen ejected  below safe ejection minimum altitude killed. Recovered  in an inflated life raft
Crew was from the 97th Bombardment Wing on temporary duty assignment from Eaker Air Force Base
 
 

FEEDBACK

I just reviewed your information concerning 59-2593 which was lost 15 miles North of Diego Garcia on 2/3/91.

It seems to show that Captain Jon Jeffery Olson was navigator, more likely he was pilot due to his rank.

I know the navigator was Jorge Arteaga.  My family are friends of Jorge's parents, brother and sister.  Jorge's father is a Bolivian citizen who we met when he worked at the UN in New York.

Jorge grew up in the US and graduated from Case Reserve.

It may be of interest to you that Jorge's memorial service was the first one held at Arlington National Cemetery for a casualty of Desert Storm.  A Marine helicopter pilot's service was held later that morning with tons of publicity.  The Arteaga family did not want the publicity.  The service was held at Fort Myers chapel, attended many including the Bolivian ambassador to the US and the Fort Myers commander.  The body was lost at sea, but Jorge's stone is on a hillside to the rear ans to the right of the Tomb of the Unknowns.

Good luck with your ambitious project,

Tim Gallagher
in email 15th April 2010
web page amended 22nd April 2010

 

 

FEEDBACK

 


".   .   .   Just some corrections to the crew info for 59-2593 (Desert Storm bird from Eaker AFB that crashed off Diego Garcia on 2/3/1991)...

Captain Jon Jeffery Olson was the Radar Navigator / Bombardier. I trained Jeff at Eaker before the war -- a "local upgrade".

Jorge Arteaga was the Navigator. In fact, he was the last navigator on my crew before I went to Little Rock for C-130 cross-training.

Eric Hedeen was the Electronic Warfare Officer (EWO).

I was in the same Flight as all 6 crew members, and it was a shock to hear about them."

"Bomber Bob"
Major (RET) JW Stewart

in email 31st August 2011
amended 11th September 2011

 

 

 


USAF

24th June 1994
1416 hours PDT

B-52H Stratofortress 61-0026
Czar 52
92 BW Fairchild Air Force Base, WA          

Co-pilot Lt Col Mark C. McGeehan initiated an ejection but the low level only allowed the "hatch blowing" part of the ejection sequence to occur before impact.
 

 


 
While executing a "go-around" Approximately three quarters of the way through the turn, the aircraft banked past 90 degrees, stalled, clipped a power line with the left wing and crashed. Crashed at Fairchild AFB, Wa

 

 

 
 
 

   
Pilot Lt Col Arthur A  "Bud" Holland
Chief of the 92d Bomb Wing Standardization and Evaluation branch. instructor pilot, was designated as the aircraft commander
killed
Co-pilot Lt Col Mark C. McGeehan
instructor pilot and the 325th Bomb Squadron (BMS) Commander
killed
Colonel Robert E. Wolff Observer
Vice Wing Commander
killed 
Lt Col Kenneth "Ken" Huston, the 325th BMS Operations Officer
killed

 

                 

 

Monday 21st July 2008
09:45

USAF
B-52H Stratofortress 60-0053
"Hot Stuff"
"Louisiana Fire"
RAIDER 21
2nd Bomb Wing, Barksdale Air Force  deployed to Andersen Air Force Base Crashed off the coast of Guam at approximately 9:45 about 40 kilometers (25 miles) northwest of Apra Harbor All six crew killed    
Maj. Christopher M. Cooper
[33]
aircraft commander, 96th Bomb Squadron
Maj. Brent D. Williams
[37]
instructor/navigator, 96th Bomb Squadron
Capt. Michael K. Dodson
[31]
co-pilot, 20th Bomb Squadron
1st Lt. Joshua D. Shepherd
[26]
navigator, 20th Bomb Squadron
1st Lt. Robert D. Gerren
[32]
electronic warfare officer, 20th Bomb Squadron
Col. George Martin
flight surgeon, deputy commander of the 36th Medical Group, Andersen AFB
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                photos USAF

The co-pilot of RAIDER 21 (B-52 60-0052) was my best friend since 7th grade. 
 
In reference to RAIDR21, I wanted to provide a few facts for you.
 
According to the Accident Ivestigation Board (AIB) report, the Pilot and Radar Nav ejected, but didn't survive due to the extreme nose-low attitude.  The Nav attempted ejection, but didn't leave the aircraft.  The flight surgeon, Col. (Dr) Martin was presumably in the IP seat, and had no ability to eject, but could have bailed out, time permitting.  The Co-pilot and EWO reportedly didn't attempt ejection. 
 
Remains from Maj. Cooper "Coop", Maj Williams "Fireball", Lt Shephard "Shaman", and Col. (Dr.) Martin "Doc" were recovered.  The remains of Capt. Dodson "Bull" and Capt (poshumously promoted) Gerren "Bobby" were never found, except for Bull's drogue chute from his parachute. 
 
The most likely cause of the crash, according to the AIB, was runaway stabilizer/trim in the nose-down condition.  From the onset of the maneuver to impact was just about a minute.  The last RADAR hit (approx 2300 ft AGL) showed the airplane at 33 degrees nose-down, 510 KCAS, and more than 28,000 feet-per-minute rate of decent.
 
I hope this proves to be a valuable addition to your site.
 
 
On a side note, you might look into the 2 KC-135 bailouts.  I have some paperwork about it, but not the full stories.  I know one was around Clinton-Sherman AFB, OK.
 
Best Regards,
TSgt Jason "Brain" Burianek, USAF

 

 

   
  Mr. Bennett,
Thanks for your site.  It's very interesting and pays a great homage to the "crewdogs" who paid the ultimate price for their partiotism. 
 
Acknowledgements to add
References to add

           

 

 

Mac’s Facts no. 46  (B52 Combat Losses/Operational Losses in Vietnam)

June 11, 2003

 

B-52Ds, B-52Fs, and B-52Gs flew Combat Missions in South East Asia. B-52Ds and B-52Gs flew the Linebacker II missions into Route Pack Five and Six, December 1972.

 

This document was done to clear up some confusion as to the names of crewmembers of ten B52s lost over North Vietnam and fourteen B52s lost in other locations.  I have not had the opportunity to read other excellent source books, Linebacker II: A View From the Rock by McCarthy, Linebacker -The Untold Story of the Air Raids Over North Vietnam by Karl J. Eschmann, 11 Days of Christmas by Marshall L. Mitchel, III, published 2002, B-52s Over Hanoi by James McCarthy, and Boeing’s Cold War Warrior: B-52 Stratofortress by Dorr & Peacock, published 1995.  Another great reference is Boeing B-52 by Walter Boyne, published in 1981, updated in 1994.  Additional Linebacker books are listed on Amazon.com.  This document should supplement these and future publications.  This document uses the “official” shoot down dates as recorded by the U.S. Defense Department.  For example, Cobalt 1 was shot down over Hanoi at 0003 local time on 12-28-72.  Other researchers fix the shoot down date as 12-27-72, the date the a/c took off from its home base.  (A flight could take eight hours just getting to the target).  I will use 12-28-72, the official Department of Defense date.  Ranks shown are the ranks at the time of shoot down.

 

Call sign        Model    Date          Base          Crewmember               Position    Status                                 

 

 

Orange 3          B52D     12-20-72   U-Tapao   Maj John Stuart             Pilot          XX

                        No. 56-0622                               1stLt Paul Granger         Co-Pilot    RR

                                                                           Maj Randolph Perry      R/Nav        XX

                                                                           Capt Thomas Klomann Nav           RR

                                                                           Capt Irwin Lerner          EWO         XX     

                                                                           E7 Arthur McLaughlin  Gunner      XX

 

Quilt 3             B52G     12-20-72   Andersen   Capt Terry Geloneck     Pilot          RR

                        No. 57-6496                               1stLt William Arcuri      Co-Pilot    RR

                                                                           Capt Warren Spencer     R/Nav        NR

                                                                           1stLt Michael Martini   Nav           RR

                                                                           Capt Craig Paul              EWO         NR

                                                                           E5 Roy Madden            Gunner      RR

 

Olive 1            B52G     12-21-72   Andersen   LtCol Keith Heggen       Air Cdr      KR     

                        No. 58-0198                               LtCol James Nagahiro    Pilot          RR

                                                                           Capt Donovan Walters  Co-Pilot    NR

                                                                           Maj Edward Johnson     R/Nav        NR

                                                                           Capt Lynn Beens           Nav           RR

                                                                           Capt Robert Lynn         EWO         NR

                                                                           E3 Charles Bebus           Gunner      NR

Personnel data is from Defense Prisoner of War/Missing in Action Office Reference Document “U.S. Personnel Missing, Southeast Asia (and Selected Foreign Nationals) (U) dated May 2001.  Crew positions are determined from direct testimony from the returned POWs.  Ranks for the Gunners are: E3=Airman 1/c; E4=Senior Airman; E5=SSgt; E6=TSgt; E7=MSgt.  Air Cdr=Airborne Commander.

 

Status codes:  KR…Died in Captivity, negotiated remains returned, 3-13-74.

                        XX…Presumptive finding of death.  Remains still unaccounted for.

                        NR…Negotiated remains returned.  Dates of return in our records. 

                        RR…Returnee (POWs).  Dates of return in our records.

 

 

A total of 10 B-52s went down inside the borders of North Vietnam.  61 total crewmembers.   33 survivors became POWs and were released at the end of the war.  28 of the downed 61 warriors perished.  (Information is listed above).

 

Fourteen other B52s went down outside of North Vietnam.  Seven were due to combat.  Seven were “operational losses,” which occurred while B52s were enroute to combat areas in Vietnam.  (Information listed below).

 

Olive 2            B52D     11-22-72   U-Tapao   SA2 damage at Vinh.  Crashed near NKP.  Lost 4 engines on one side. 6 crewmen bailed out/recovered. No. 55-0110.

                        P- N.J. Ostozny; C/P- Tony Foley; RN- Bud Rech; N- Bob Estes; EWO- Larry Stephens; G- Ronald W. Sellers.

 

(Unknown)     B52D     5-8-69  Andersen,  no. 56-0693 [56-0593] was lost on takeoff from Guam.  It started a right turn after t/o and crashed in the sea killing all six aboard.

 

page last updated Friday, 08 November 2013 19:28

 

 
Sir, I found this web page after searching for information concerning a mid-air collision between two B-52s.  I met Don Harten, a survivor of the collision, while stationed at Bergstrom AFB, TX in 1980-82.  Major Harden worked in the Plans and Programs Division of the 602d Tactical Air Control Wing.  Don was originally from Pocatello Idaho and that is probably where he retired to.

He was a 1Lt when the accident happened and he recounted the story to me, which was published in a local Pocatello paper, about how the entire event went down.  The flight of B-52's were placed on counter-rotating orbits around the KC135s that were supposed to have been separated by a safe distance.  Somewhere in all the excitement the 135s were about 10 miles too close which put the 52s into the path of each other.  He remembered looking out the wind-screen and seeing the vertical  stabilizer of the approaching B-52, and he said it was like slow motion as the vertical-stab passed by and sheared off the wing of his B-52.  He was able to eject into the night and found himself in the middle of the Pacific ocean at night.  The survival gear that was attached to his chute was still the arctic survival pack, no one had thought about changing it out when the BUFFS were pulled from their nuke mission.  His story of survival is nothing less that incredible, not only did he survive an ejection from a B-52, but also the crash of the first rescue plane that picked him up.  The first PBY sea-plane attempted to take off in rough seas and crashed killing the crew, I believe was how the story went.  This put him back in the water for another day or two until he was found again.  He mentioned also of almost being "run-over" by a freighter that never saw him in the water.

As a young Airman, I found all this fascinating and hard to believe until he brought in a copy of the article.  After leaving Bergstrom AFB TX, I was assigned to Andersen AB Guam where in the 43d Bomb Wing HQ was a memorial plaque honoring those who died and listed the survivors of the head-on crash.

Major Harden was a great American who went own to fly over 200 combat missions in F-105s and F-111s during the Viet Nam war and I fell honored having known him for a brief time.


Steven Langston
SMSgt (Retired)
U.S. Air Force.=