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Guam Crash in the Seventies

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On Wednesday, June 01, 2016 at 5:50 PM, DRFransen said:

To Texas Rick: I am Darrell Fransen, I was the Crew Chief of record on 1841 when it went down, my name was in the 781's!. Due to an impending PCS out of Clark AB; I was not able to accompany "my bird" back for PDM. It was on a ferry flight to Warner Robins. Al (Amos) Newsom took my place on that ill fated flight; his wife had recently given birth (to a girl as I recall) and he was over-joyed at the prospect of seeing his wife and new child. I still get weepy when thinking about this. I did not know any of the flight crew. I remember that I was staying off-base and someone got word to me that I was needed immediately at the squadron. I had no idea what new I would get, but when they told me, I sat down and cried. I used to have a copy of the preliminary accident report, but many years of moving have taken their toll on many things that I tried to keep. The night vision problem and impacting the runway after take off are fact. I pray that this ads a little humanity to the facts.

To Tx Rick: My name is Sonny Naranjo CMSGT USAF (ret.) I was the Loadmaster assigned to this crew. I was assigned to the 776 TAS just 5 months prior to the crash and decided I did not want to go on leave because i wanted to save it so your dad took my place.

 

On Wednesday, June 01, 2016 at 5:50 PM, DRFransen said:

To Texas Rick: I am Darrell Fransen, I was the Crew Chief of record on 1841 when it went down, my name was in the 781's!. Due to an impending PCS out of Clark AB; I was not able to accompany "my bird" back for PDM. It was on a ferry flight to Warner Robins. Al (Amos) Newsom took my place on that ill fated flight; his wife had recently given birth (to a girl as I recall) and he was over-joyed at the prospect of seeing his wife and new child. I still get weepy when thinking about this. I did not know any of the flight crew. I remember that I was staying off-base and someone got word to me that I was needed immediately at the squadron. I had no idea what new I would get, but when they told me, I sat down and cried. I used to have a copy of the preliminary accident report, but many years of moving have taken their toll on many things that I tried to keep. The night vision problem and impacting the runway after take off are fact. I pray that this ads a little humanity to the facts.

 

On Wednesday, June 01, 2016 at 5:50 PM, DRFransen said:

To Texas Rick: I am Darrell Fransen, I was the Crew Chief of record on 1841 when it went down, my name was in the 781's!. Due to an impending PCS out of Clark AB; I was not able to accompany "my bird" back for PDM. It was on a ferry flight to Warner Robins. Al (Amos) Newsom took my place on that ill fated flight; his wife had recently given birth (to a girl as I recall) and he was over-joyed at the prospect of seeing his wife and new child. I still get weepy when thinking about this. I did not know any of the flight crew. I remember that I was staying off-base and someone got word to me that I was needed immediately at the squadron. I had no idea what new I would get, but when they told me, I sat down and cried. I used to have a copy of the preliminary accident report, but many years of moving have taken their toll on many things that I tried to keep. The night vision problem and impacting the runway after take off are fact. I pray that this ads a little humanity to the facts.

To Tx Rick: My name is Sonny Naranjo CMSGT USAF (ret.) I was the Loadmaster permanantly assigned to this crew. I was assigned to the 776 TAS just 5 months prior to the crash of 1841. I decided I did not want to go on leave with my crew because I wanted to save it so your dad Sgt Maas took my place. Maj. Ed King was a very domineering Aircraft Commander who was always very hard on Lt Hicks the Copilot and the rest of us on the crew. Each time we took off Maj King instructed Lt Hicks to immediately raise the landing gear when the aircraft lifted off the ground. He would lower the nose to momentarily to stay in ground effect and then would pull up hard on the yoke so that the aircraft would climb quicker. The runway at Guam had a slight incline at mid point and at the end. I believe that Maj King may have used this take off procedure and the aircraft inadvertently contacted the ground hard at midpoint and then struck the runway a second time at the end exploding and going off the cliff. 

I think about this accident and the loss of those fine men I served with all the time. I live in San Antonio now so I hope this brings a little more closure to friends and loved ones. 

Sonny

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While a C-130 pilot attached to Navy VQ-3 at NAS Agana 1970-72, I had the misfortune of witnessing the crash of 64-0505 piloted by Capt. Sanborn. I knew Jim since we went through 4442 cctw in Little Rock together. Somehow, control of the aircraft was lost at touchdown and it went into a sideways skid with left wing pointed down the runway. She heeled over, left external fuel tank striking runway, rupturing and bursting into flames. The crew got her pointed down the runway again and climbed perhaps 100 ft. with the left wing ablaze. The aircraft then nosed over, hit the end of the runway and came to rest engulfed in fire.

I also heard stories of unauthorized passengers aboard.

Would really like to see official accident report to learn exacty what went wrong. Email to tpturn@gmail.com if you have a copy.

 

 

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This is an old thread but thought I would add something to it.  I was stationed on Guam from Dec 73-Mar 75.  I remember the crash discussed here.  It happened on a Saturday evening.  I was standing in line at the base theater with a friend who worked in the Civil Engineering organization.  Every Saturday they would do a "sneak preview" at the base theater.  You never know what movie they were going to show but it was always something new, and this showing was always popular.  It started at 9:00pm and you needed to get there early to get in and get a good seat.

While standing in line just before 9:00pm the sky lit up - extremely bright - sort of a yellow orange color.  There was no discernible explosion or noise - just the sky lighting up for about 30 seconds.  People basically looked around and there was a buzz of conversation, but no commotion.  The line kept moving and we went inside to claim our seats.  Shortly after the National Anthem, during the previews of coming attractions, a notice went up on the screen that there was a Civil Engineering recall and my friend had to leave.  I can't remember what I did after that, but later learned that it was a C-130 that crashed on take-off.  I recall one of the pilots at the golf course telling me later that for some reason it cartwheeled after take-off.  Also later in the week it was written up in the local newspaper and they reported that the lit sky could be seen all the way down into Agana.  

BTW - my unit on Guam was the 605th MASSQ.  I worked in the Avionics shop - radio repair - on the local WC 130-H's and also transient C-5's and C-141"s.

Edited by Ralph Wade
correcting typo's

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To Texas Rick,

I am so sorry for your loss. My father, Ed King, was the pilot of the C-130 that crashed at Guam in ‘74. I was 3 at the time. I don’t have a ton of details, but I always heard from family,  that there was an engine failure during takeoff and not enough runway left. 

I also want to thank all the me. That served and also those who have reported details of what they know. It is helping me understand what happened. 

I also appreciate those who have cleared up the Pan-Am stewardess error, so that my Dad’s reputation is not tarnished falsely. 

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I was stationed at NAS Agana Guam from June 1972 to June 1974. I was an Air Traffic Controller. I was there the on December 9th 1972 when the Air Force C-130 crashed. Captain Sanborn was a great guy as was TSGT Candelario. He went by the nickname "Candy". We got to know this particular air crew pretty well as they were TDY at NAS Agana. We went over to the Pan Am Hotel many times together for beers after work with that crew.. I do know that after the initial crash we saw at least 2 crewman get out of the plane and then run back inside to try and save people. The C-130 erupted in flames and the two heroes did not make it out. We rolled the crash crew but it was not enough to save them. I still believe to this day that it was Captain Sanborn and Candy that went back into the plane. It was a very tough time for all of us involved and I still think about the crew a lot. I do know that Candy told me he was from Puerto Rico.

It was just a coincidence that I happened to be working in the NAS Agana Tower the night the other Air Force C-130 crashed in April 1974 at Anderson AFB. I remember I was working A Stand and it was very late at night and we saw a large fireball up toward AAFB. I called them on our direct line immediately to see if they had seen that explosion. The controller told me they had just lost a C-130 on the runway and would have to call us back later. I never talked to him again. I did hear the next day that the C-130 had crashed and exploded and ran off the end of the runway and off the cliff. I had also heard that the C-130 was fully fueled and was heading to Midway but I never did verify that.

These were very bad memories for me and the others I worked with.

AC2 Foster

 

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