Information on U.S. Army helicopter OH-6A tail number 67-16347
The Army purchased this helicopter 0968
Total flight hours at this point: 00001726
Date: 12/19/1971 MIA-POW file reference number: 1787
Incident number: 71121910.KIA
Unit: 11 ACR
UTM grid coordinates: XU026248
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: 1787 ()
Loss to Inventory
AC 1LT FORAME PETER CHARLES BNR
P WO1 SKILES THOMAS WILLIAM BNR
SYNOPSIS: On December 19, 1971, W1 Thomas W. Skiles was the pilot and 1Lt. Peter C. Forame the co-pilot on board an OH6A helicopter (tail #67-16347) on a bomb damage assessment mission southeast of Bambe, Kampong Cham Province, Cambodia. During the mission, the helicopter began receiving heavy 30 and 51 caliber automatic weapons fire and in attempting to climb, the helicopter turned and burst into flames. The aircraft passed over an open area and crashed into a tree line, exploded on impact, and was completely destroyed by fire in a very short time. Two other helicopters immediately flew near the crash site to search for survivors, but these aircraft were driven away by RPG and automatic weapons fire. One of the helicopters suffered extensive damage. A short time later, gunships were called in to supress the enemy fire. A scout helicopter crew reported that the Forame/Skiles helicopter was destroyed by fire, and that they had spotted two burned bodies near the aircraft. The remainder of the day, air strikes were conducted, and the following day, another attempt to recover the remains was made. This helicopter was shot down and one of the recovery crewmen was critically wounded. On December 22 and 23, extensive air strikes were conducted in the general area to include B52 strikes. In the same hot region of Cambodia, two had died, and one had been critically wounded by enemy fire trying to bring out the bodies of comrades. The combined military service branches did their best to see that another American life was not taken at this location.
This record was last updated on 08/22/2000
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Date posted on this site: 09/23/2017
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