Today in History – June 13, 1968 – Huey and O-2 crash over Quang Ngai

June 13, 1968 – “A U.S. Army UH-1D helicopter (#66-01016), a Dolphin slick, was dispatched from Duc Pho to fly command and control for the 4th Battalion, 3d Infantry, 11th Light Infantry Brigade.

WO1 James D. Carter was the aircraft commander on the Dolphin. WO1 Jerry H. Johnson was the pilot, and SP4 Gary A. Milton and PFC Allen R. Weamer were the door gunners. The aircraft landed at LZ Dottie to pick up LTC Frank A. Barker Jr., CAPT Earl R. Michles, and 1LT Michael L. Phillips, 4/3 Infantry, then departed at 0730 hours to fly a visual reconnaissance in the area where a unit from 4/3 Infantry had reported light contact.

Dolphin 016 was avoiding machine-gun fire on climb out when it collided with a USAF O-2A Skymaster (#67-21415) airplane piloted by MAJ David G. Brenner while flying at about 1000 feet AGL (above ground level). Both aircraft crashed. At 0745 hours, the 174th Assault Helicopter Company operations center at Duc Pho received a report that WO1 Carter’s aircraft was involved in a mid-air collision with the forward observer airplane. The UH-1D burst into flames on impact, the O-2 also crashing nearby.

Another helicopter crew in the area observed WO1 Carter’s aircraft impact with the ground and stated they did not see anyone escape from the crash. An element from A Company, 4/3 Infantry was airlifted to both crash sites. They could find no survivors at either crash site.”

Later, “a 174th maintenance aircraft (Witchdoctor) arrived at the UH-1D crash site and assisted in the removal of five bodies from the surrounding area.

The remains of the O-2 pilot, MAJ Brenner, were also recovered.

David George Brenner was born on September 26, 1933, in Manhattan, KS. listed as the city. He had enlisted in the United States Air Force and entered the service via Regular Military. Brenner served during the Vietnam War. He began his tour on March 15, 1968, and had the rank of Major. Major Brenner was attached to 7th Air Force, 504th Tsg, 20th Tass. David is buried at Leonardville Methodist Church Cemetery, Leonardville, KS.

Note: One additional body (believed to be WO1 Carter) was still in the wreckage and could not be recovered due to the extensive damage to and burning of the helicopter. The maintenance crew reported no survivors in the area and that helicopter 016 was completely destroyed. On subsequent searches on 13th, 14th, and 15th of June 1968, only portions of bodies were recovered and evacuated. Of these, none could be identified as the remains of WO1 Carter. The Chu Lai Graves Registration shipped a total of six remains involved with the incident to the Da Nang US Army mortuary (there were seven crew and passengers aboard the helicopter). WO1 Carter is carried in the status of KWF, body not recovered. [Taken from]”


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