2019 Gladiator Reunion

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September 12 - 15, 2019

Minneapolis, Minnesota

1st Aviation Brigade LOGO 52 Combat Avaition Battalion
Gladiators - Cougars » 1967 - 1973

Goldbook information on UH-1D 66-16699

Information on U.S. Army helicopter UH-1D tail number 66-16699
The Army purchased this helicopter 0867
Total flight hours at this point: 00001975
Date: 12/06/69
Incident number: 69120657.KIA
Unit: 57 AHC
South Vietnam
UTM grid coordinates: ZB036029
Casualties = 05 KIA . .
Original source(s) and document(s) from which the incident was created or updated: Defense Intelligence Agency Helicopter Loss database. Also: OPERA, Unit history (Operations Report. )
Summary: Hit by small arms fire, resulting in loss of power at a low altitude above thick jungle canopy.
Loss to Inventory

Crew Members:
AC 1LT SCHROCK PHILIP JOHN KIA
P CPT FERRELL CHARLES ELTON KIA
CE SP5 MIRANDA PETER KALANI KIA
G PFC DURFLINGER ROLLAND LEON KIA

Passengers:
COL MILLER GEORGE LIVINGSTON, AR, PX, KIA;


War Story:
The 57th AHC's unit history states that Aircraft 699, commanded by CPT Charles Ferrell, and pilot, 1LT Phillip Shrock, with the crew chief SP5 Miranda and gunner PFC Ronald Durflinger crashed, killing the crew and given passengers aboard. It is believed that the aircraft was hit by small arms fire, resulting in loss of power at a low altitude above thick jungle canopy. The VHPA asked members of the 57th Association for help with the phrase "given passengers" beacuse The WALL database lists only five KIAs in Kontum Prov for this date. This includes the four crew member plus COL Miller. COL Miller's organization code indicates he was assigned to MACV. Former members of the 57th AHC provided the following ideas. The events surrounding this accident are a very dark day for the 57th. CPT Ferrell was about to DEROS and he had never flown as AC or PIC. He was a member of the Second Lift Platoon. CPT Wong was the platoon leader at this time. The night before, Ferrell made out his platoon's schedule for the next day and put himself up to fly left seat without Wong's knowledge or approval. The mission was flown for the Kontum Sector which was a cream-puff mission. You just flew the advisors around to Montagnard villages. Ferrell was taking off from a fire base or some place high on a hill. He was so overloaded that he crashed on takeoff down a steep cliff. The phrase "given passengers" probably should read "eleven passengers" because they were stacked in the Huey, shoulder to shoulder. Apparently the only American passenger was a MACV full colonel who may have been the Sector commander. This was a high profile accident.

The following is from Craig P. J. Wheel, WO-1 2nd Plt, 57th AHC (69-70):

The report stated that CPT Ferrell just assigned himself to the left seat without CPT Wong's knowledge. I find this to be questionable as there was a pretty lengthy discussion by the AC's the night prior to the accident about the crewing assignments.CPT Ferrell was assigned to be the Aircraft Commander(AC) by Maj. Charles and was a concern to the ACs of the platoon. While CPT Ferrell met the time requirements to be an Aircraft Commander, he had not taken the normal training and checkride to be an official Aircraft Commander. CPT Wong objected to this assignment but was overruled. While CPT Ferrell had been with the unit for 11 months, his primary duties had been as the Project Officer for many of the compound's building projects. This precluded him from getting the varied experience expected of an AC. The eleven passengers consisted of COL Miller, and his RVN counterpart and staff.

From Craig P. J. Wheel, WO-1 2nd Plt, 57th AHC (69-70)

This record was last updated on 04/03/2011


The following is crew member information for this incident:


Name: PFC Rolland Leon Durflinger
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 12/06/69 while performing the duty of Gunner.
Age at death: 21.9
Date of Birth: 01/13/48
Home City: Watseka, IL
Service: regular component of the U.S. Army.
Unit: 57 AHC
Major organization: 1st Aviation Brigade
Service: U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 15W-031
Aircraft: UH-1D tail number 66-16699
SSN: 316468031
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 67A1F = Aircraft Maintenance Apprentice
Primary cause: Hostile Fire
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: fire or burns
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: door gunner
Started Tour: 06/02/69
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - other aircrew
Location: Kontum Province II Corps.
Military grid coordinates of event: ZB036029
Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Hostile - killed
married male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Relgion: Baptist - other groups
The following information is secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: enlisted personnel
This record was last updated on 04/18/98



Name: CPT Charles Elton Ferrell
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 12/06/69 while performing the duty of Pilot.
Age at death: 29.6
Date of Birth: 04/14/40
Home City: Lawton, OK
Service: FA branch of the reserve component of the U.S. Army.
Unit: 57 AHC
Major organization: 1st Aviation Brigade
Flight class: 68-14/68-22
Service: FA branch of the U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 15W-032
Aircraft: UH-1D tail number 66-16699
Call sign: Gladiator
SSN: 237625822
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 1981 = 19 Rotary Wing Aviator (Unit Commander)
Primary cause: Hostile Fire
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: fire or burns
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: aircraft commander
Started Tour: 01/29/69
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - other aircrew
Length of service: 12
Location: Kontum Province II Corps.
Military grid coordinates of event: ZB036029
Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Hostile - killed
married male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Relgion: Protestant - no denominational preference
The following information is secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: officer
This record was last updated on 04/18/98



Name: COL George Livingston Miller
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 12/06/69 while performing the duty of Passenger.
Date of Birth: 08/30/25
Home City: Ambler, PA
Service: AR branch of the regular component of the U.S. Army.
Major organization: MACV advisors
Service: AR branch of the U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 15W-033
Aircraft: UH-1D tail number 66-16699
SSN: 206167568
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 1542 = 15 Infantry Unit Commander
Primary cause: Hostile Fire
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: fire or burns
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: passenger
Started Tour: 02/16/69
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - non-aircrew
Length of service: 20
Location: Kontum Province II Corps.
Military grid coordinates of event: ZB036029
Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Hostile - killed
married male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Relgion: Presbyterian
The following information is secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: officer
This record was last updated on 04/18/98



Name: SP5 Peter Kalani Miranda
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 12/06/69 while performing the duty of Crew Chief.
Age at death: 21.4
Date of Birth: 07/06/48
Home City: Holloman Afb, NM
Service: regular component of the U.S. Army.
Unit: 57 AHC
Major organization: 1st Aviation Brigade
Service: U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 15W-033
Aircraft: UH-1D tail number 66-16699
SSN: 585246886
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 67N20 = UH-1 Helicopter Repairer
Primary cause: Hostile Fire
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: fire or burns
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: crew chief
Started Tour: 07/18/69
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - other aircrew
Length of service: 02
Location: Kontum Province II Corps.
Military grid coordinates of event: ZB036029
Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Hostile - killed
single male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Relgion: Roman Catholic
The following information is secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: enlisted personnel
This record was last updated on 04/18/98



Name: 1LT Philip John Schrock
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 12/06/69 while performing the duty of Aircraft Commander.
Age at death: 28.8
Date of Birth: 01/31/41
Home City: Southgate, MI
Service: FA branch of the reserve component of the U.S. Army.
Unit: 57 AHC
Major organization: 1st Aviation Brigade
Flight class: 69-20
Service: FA branch of the U.S. Army.
The Wall location: 15W-033
Aircraft: UH-1D tail number 66-16699
Call sign: Gladiator
SSN: 362409259 Service number: O5434819
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 1981 = 19 Rotary Wing Aviator (Unit Commander)
Primary cause: Hostile Fire
Major attributing cause: aircraft connected not at sea
Compliment cause: fire or burns
Vehicle involved: helicopter
Position in vehicle: pilot
Started Tour: 08/22/69
"Official" listing: helicopter air casualty - pilot
Length of service: 08
Location: Kontum Province II Corps.
Military grid coordinates of event: ZB036029
Reason: aircraft lost or crashed
Casualty type: Hostile - killed
married male U.S. citizen
Race: Caucasian
Relgion: Lutheran (Missouri Synod)
The following information is secondary, but may help in explaining this incident.
Category of casualty as defined by the Army: battle dead Category of personnel: active duty Army Military class: officer
This record was last updated on 04/18/98


The following is Goldbook information on US Army helicopter UH-1H tail number 66-16699
It is provided here as an ESTIMATE of the history of this helicopter and is not intended to be the final authority.
This helicopter was purchased by the US Army in 0867.
Please provide any additional information on this helicopter to the VHPA.

DATE  FLT HRS    UIC      UNIT          AREA          POST          COUNTRY
6708  19   19 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6709  97  116 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6710  81  197 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6711  96  293 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6712  96  389 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6801  53  442 3261   355 AVN CO       4TH ARMY   FORT SILL        4TH ARMY
6802  32  474 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6803  60  534 3261   355 AVN CO       4TH ARMY   FORT SILL        4TH ARMY
6804  95  629 3261   BELL HCPTR       BAILMENT   FT WORTH         AVCOM
6805 140  769 3261   355 AVN CO       4TH ARMY   FORT SILL        4TH ARMY
6806  22  791 3261   355 AVN CO       4TH ARMY   FORT SILL        4TH ARMY
6807  96  887 3261   OPM SEA NITEOPS  1ST ARMY   FORT BELVOIR     AMC
6808  22  909 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6809 132 1041 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6810   0 1041 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6811  74 1115 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6812  88 1203 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6901 108 1311 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6902  38 1349 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6903  94 1443 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6904  51 1494 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6905  97 1591 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6906 137 1728 WAAXB0 COB 229ABAH1CAV  VIETNAM                     RVN
6907  72 1800 WC5DAA 605 TRANS CO DS  VIETNAM                     RVN
6908   0 1800 WC5DAA 605 TRANS CO DS  VIETNAM                     RVN
6909   0 1800 WC5DAA 605 TRANS CO DS  VIETNAM                     RVN
6910  57 1857 WAX5AA 57 AVN CO AM FW  VIETNAM                     RVN
6911 118 1975 WAX5AA 57 AVN CO AM FW  VIETNAM                     RVN

Printed from databases on: 08/27/00