Information on U.S. Army helicopter UH-1B tail number 62-01880
Date: 01/18/1964 MIA-POW file reference number: 0028
Incident number: 64011813.KIA
UTM grid coordinates: XR700836
Original source(s) and document(s) from which the incident was created or updated: Defense Intelligence Agency Reference Notes. Defense Intelligence Agency Helicopter Loss database. Also: 0028 ()
Loss to Inventory
P 1LT METOYER BRYFORD GLENN BNR
CE PFC STRALEY JOHN LEROY BNR
P WO1 GRAY PATRICK E RES
G PFC SULLIVAN JOHNNIE L RES
Passengers and/or other participants:
Wing Commander LEE ALLAN H, British Royal Air Force, PX, KIA
Source: Compiled by Homecoming II Project 15 October 1990 from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews. SYNOPSIS: 1Lt. Bryford Metoyer was the pilot and PFC John L. Straley was the crew chief of a UH1B helicopter flying a tactical operation over South Vietnam. The helicopter made a pass into some enemy positions, then experienced a tail rotor failure and crashed over water. The operation was being conducted along the shoreline of the South China Sea in the Kien Hua Province region. Three of the crew were rescued or recovered, and a search for Metoyer and Straley was conducted for about 10 days with no results.
Sad to say it confirms what I had heard, that it was lost and my replacement killed. I was told that sharks got them before they could be rescued, which is probably true, since neither body was recovered. In the summer of 63, I convinced the powers that be to let me move the rockets down under the gun pylons. I maintain that 880 was the first in RVN to be so configured, and it was the only one like that in UTT when I left in Nov 63. Folks from Redstone took pictures of it, and of course we know that subsequently they equipped new HUEY's that way. I'll send along a picture. My 2nd tour was as the Maint Plt Sgt in C-1st-9th, 1st Air Cav 66-67. Also a great unit. Thanks again, Steve Hundley, March 2001. The two men rescued were WO Patrick E Gray - UTT Hel Co - co-pilot PFC Johnnie L. Sullivan - 560th MP Co The British officer was Wing Commander Allan H. Lee - Royal Air Force Both Metoyer and Lee survived the crash and were observed treading water. Metoyer was heard yelling instructions to remain calm. He then disappeared. An attempt to pull the British officer on board a rescue helicopter failed and when he slipped from their grasp, he too disappeared. Waves were high and there were no life preservers on board. There were only 25 on the whole base and this mission was not supposed to be over water. Pfc Straley could not swim. I have all the incident reports and other info that I dug up in the Library of Congress if you want the specifics. The was a report that Metoyer may have been sighted in a Chinese Prison Camp. The National League of Families is trying to obtain photos of the 1,836 that are still unaccounted for in Southeast Asia. I chair the committee. Do you guys have any photos? Candace Lokey, March 2005.
This record was last updated on 03/27/2005
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