Information on U.S. Army helicopter AH-1 tail number 68-17083
The Army purchased this helicopter 0769
Total flight hours at this point: 00001659
Date: 01/05/1971 MIA-POW file reference number: 1689
Incident number: 71010519.KIA
Unit: HHT/1/9 CAV
UTM grid coordinates: ZD060160
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: 1689 ()
Loss to Inventory
P CW2 CRAMER DONALD MARTIN BNR
PX SP4 ROGERS RONNIE VAGO KIA
Crash over water of Donald M. Cramer (Refno. 1689) On January 5, 1971, Chief Warrant Officer Cramer and Specialist Fourth Class Ronnie V. Rogers departed from the Hue/Phu Bai Air Field to conduct a test of CWO Cramer's AH-1G Cobra helicopter aircraft armament system. He had been cleared to test his weapons in a free fire zone south southeast of Fire Support Base Normandy. He was last reported in a coastal area of Thua Thien Province approximately 20 kilometers east of the air field. Flying weather at the time was judged to be poor and there was no radio communications with him after takeoff. He did not return from the weapon's system test and both crewmen were declared missing. On January 8, 1971, the body of Specialist Rogers were located on the beach in the general area where the AH-1G was last known to be operating. An autopsy determined the cause of his death was due to drowning. Returning U.S. POWs had no information about the fate of CW2 Cramer. In June 1973 he was declared dead/body not recovered, based on a presumptive finding of death. SYNOPSIS: At 0210 hours on January 5, 1971, CW2 Donald M. Cramer, pilot of an AH1G (tail #67-16083), departed the Hue/Phu Bai Airfield on a training flight mission with SP4 Ronnie V. Rogers aboard. No contact was established after takeoff. When the aircraft failed to return within a reasonable time, efforts were made to establish radio contact. After checking all airfields and contact bases in the area, an aerial search was initiated at 1640 hours, and lasted until dark. On January 8, SP4 Roger's body was found on the beach. The search shifted primarily into the coastline areas until about January 20, with no sightings of the aircraft or of CW2 Cramer. Because it was determined that Rogers had drowned, it was assumed that the aircraft departed its destination (a fire base), and crashed into the South China Sea. CW2 Cramer was never found. He was listed Missing in Action.
This record was last updated on 05/25/1998
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