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Wil Sanchez

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Everything posted by Wil Sanchez

  1. Archie, you have an enviable carreer on herks. Did you start out on ABCCC and when? I was on 62-1809 in Da Nang in July of 1967. I have never heard anyone talk about the ABCCC's flying out of Da Nang in 1967 before the attack on July 15th. I have also never heard anyone talk about 62-1815 which was our backup plane and was destroyed in the same attack. Another question for everyoe and anyone. When did they upgrade motors to the -15's? Wil
  2. Sorry to highjack this thread. Skip were you invovled with operation eagle claw? 62-1809 was my plane at Da Nang in 1967. She had the outer wing burned to the ground. After they fixed her up she continued to fly ABCCC missions for some time until her demise in Iran. Wil
  3. I have been reloading for many years and the 1 potential problem I encountered was loading 44Mag. I was trying Unique powder to simulate 44 Specials. Unique is a fast burning powder and does not require a lot of powder. I did a double load in one case but I always look at the cases when I finished loading powder and discovered the double load. I would have been very sad to damage a Ruger Redhawk and possible personal injury. I now load only slow powders to eliminate that problem, and still check every batch. Wil
  4. Bob, if IP stands for Instructor Pilot your list shows 4 out of 5 had IP's on them. That's kind of scary. Wil Wil Not that unusual for IP's to be aboard accident aircraft. Sometimes the IP is either not in the seat or does not react to a student mistake. Other times too high a self estimate of the IP's own abilities, leads them into something stupid. Bob Bob Thanks for clearing that up. As I said thats kind of scary. Then again we were young and stupid. Wil
  5. Bob, thanks for clearing that up for me. It has been 40 years since I thought about that crash. Wil
  6. If I remember correctly the pilot was Major Ronald Shelton. He was the commander of the 50th OMS. He was trying to get his flight time in. I had just left CCK on the 16th of September. I arrived in Albuquerque on the 3rd or 4th of October. I got a call on the 5th from a friend I knew in California that knew I was to rotate about that time. That is when I found out about the crash. I was quite sad as I knew him fairly well. Wil
  7. Dan, thank your nephew for al of us. Many of us know the job at hand and wish him well. I live about 3 miles from the Bell Helicopter facilty in Arlington, Texas. I used to enjoy the Ospreys coming over during it's testing phase. On occasion I would go by the Arlington airport and see an Osprey manuevering at the airport. I would stop and spend as much time as I could appreciating its capabilities. Wil
  8. Interesting discussion concerning drogue beaters and choppers. Has anyone seen the video showing a Helo being refueled and it makes a sudden move up which causes the blade to cut off the refueling probe. If you haven't let me know and I'll see if I can find it. Wil
  9. Sorry to hear about a good plane getting injured. I had asked in a previous post if anyone else had ever jumped run chocks. Another individual hinted that it was impossible to jump chocks. Here is proof positive that it can and will happen on occasion. Some people just don't realize how much they move around during a 4 engine full power run. Wil
  10. Ronsram, thanks for the pictures. I arrived at CCk in Jan. 1967. We were the second group to arrive that didn't live in tents. I was in the transient barracks for almost 2 months until they got me a room. Seems the new barracks were not quite ready yet. I was there until Feb. 1967. Post some more pictures and you will make a lot of people homesick. Wil
  11. Hey Ken, you just reminded me of the nights I spent on top of my Herk in Cam Ranh Bay. One difference though, I would on occasion lie next to the Vertical Stabilizer. I had my pillow and was quite comfortable. I would wake to every truck that went by. Me and Assistant CC spent 3 days broke at Da Nang. We had an engine or prop problem. Engine shop said it was a prop issue and Prop shop said it was an engine issue. We spent the whole 3 days running engines while each shop tried their magic. Finally did a Prop change which fixed the problem. We slept on the plane for brief periods for a total of maybe 2 hours in that 3 day time period. Wewere pretty ripe after 3 days with no showers. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner was Peanut butter and Crackers and Tang. A funny story from CRB. The AirPolice used to borrow the exhaust on the Power Unit to warm up their C rats. One night the AP came over with a new AP and was showing him how to get a delicious warm meal. The next night the new guy asked if he could use the Power Unit. I told him to help himself. I was inside doing something when I heard an explosion. I ran upstairs and killed the lights, then ran out to kill the Power Unit. New AP was standing there with Pork and Beans all over the front of his jacket. Seems he missed the part about venting the can before heating it. I sent my Jeep to the flight line snack bar and had him bring back a burger and fries for the hungry young AP. Take care and stay safe. Wil
  12. Great conversation. Brought some forgotten memories. Did anybody ever jump the run chocks under full power. It is very exciting to say the least. Wil
  13. When flying with my Herk I would take out the blanket and pillow out of the life vest bag and curl up on the ramp. We some how ended up with 2 blankets and 2 pillows which we kept on the plane at all times. Prior to the blankets and pillows I would sometimes use a parachute as a pillow. Hardly ever had problems sleepingwhile flying cause I knew I had a long ight ahead of me when we got to our destination. Wil
  14. Well said. salute these warriors for their sacrifice. and I salute all of you for your service. Wil
  15. Wil Sanchez

    B-52 MITO

    I was stationed at Travis AFB in 1968 and 1969. While there we had a broken arrow alert. This reminded me of that day. they launched either 9 or 10 B-52's and then Kc135's. They even launched the B-52's on the other side of the base that supposedly had nukes on board. I worked transient maintenance while there. 1 day we were told to go to the other side and work a C-124 Shaky. When we got there the MP's made us get out of the truck while they searched it. they ran a Dog through the truck. Once they were happy they assigned us to a crew member and told not to waner away because the guns were loaded. I was told to service the oil tanks on the engines which is done over the wing. when we went inside I could see why all the security. There were about a dozen nukes on board. I didn't get the exact number as I wasn't given any time to count them. Ineresting experience to say the least. Take care Wil
  16. Hey Patrick. Welcome to the website. I grew up in Albuquerque and was there for Christmas visiting relatives. I have 2 more trips planned this year. Fathers 80th in May and 40th class reunion in July or August. Take care and enjoy the website. Wil
  17. My 1st TDY was July 1967. I was assigned to ABCCC aircraft #62-1809. We flew to Danang, Viet Nam. I had an incredible adventure. We saw a B-52 crash in the minefield at the end of the runway. Must have been a 300 ft. fireball from that crash. A few days later we were in a pickup truck heading for the Chow Hall and saw an Air Crew Member in a flight suit walking down the road. We stopped and gave him a ride to the chow Hall. turns out He was the tail gunner on the B-52 that had crashed. He was the only survivor. We saw an A1E land on fire and stop on the runway right next to where we were parked. The pilot didn't waste any time getting out of the plane. Fire guys put it out but not before extensive damage. The high point or low point of the trip occurred on July the 15th. We had just left the flight line about 11:30 and had fallen asleep. At a little after 12:00 AM we were attacked by 122 MM and 140 MM rockets. We ran to the nearest bunker and found it nearly full. We were sitting near the edge of the bunker and could see the flashes coming from the flight line. We heard something land just outside the bunker. Everyone thought it was a dud and we sqeezed in as far as we could. After about 20 minutes the explosions stopped. Someone suggested we should see where the dud was at.I was the closest to the entrance so I and the other ACC on my plane looked out. We could see something about 25 yards from us in the middle of the dirt road between the tents. We couldn't make it out in the moonlight and being young and stupid we left the safety of the bunker and moved a little closer. We didn't think it was a rocket becase of its shape so we moved closer. When got to about 5 yards away it appeared to be a large round metallic object (turned out to be the compressor section from an F-4 that had blown up on the Ramp). As we were looking at it another round of rockets hit. The loudest and brightest explosion I have ever heard came from the area of the flight line (turned out to be the ammo dump). We quickly turned and headed for the bunker and as we neared it we could hear something that sounded like hail falling around us. I was hit by several pieces just before we got to the bunker. We were finally given the all clear by the AP's around 3:00 AM. We dressed and headed for the flight line to see if we could get our plane ready for the next days mission. When we got to the flight line the AP's wouldn't let us on until they verified we were ground crew on one of the Herks. We were also told to be on the lookout for body parts. As we got near we could see our aircraft tilted to the left. As we shone our lights on it we could see that the left wing was burned from #1 engine to the wing tip and was laying on the ground due to an F-4 that exploded off our wing tip. We knew we wouldn't be flying the next day. We then began looking for our backup aircraft #62-1815 which had been parked in the middle of the ramp. It was completely burned to the ground along with an A model #55-009. My Primary CC Sgt. Parsley and the other Assistant CC were able to get a plane to CCK the next day. I spent the next 6 days trying to get back to CCK via Udorn and Bangkok. When I got back everyone was wondering what had happened to me since everyone had lost track of me. Hell of a 1st TDY. Wil
  18. Tiny, glad to hear that you caught it early. Get well soon and good luck. Wil
  19. Thanks for remembering those heroes. It is to bad they did not succeed in freeing our fellow Americans. It is good that they are not forgotten. I was assigned to 62-1809 for my first trip into Viet Nam. On July 15, 1967 she was damaged in a rocket attack in Danang, VN. the left wing was burned to number 1 engine. She was later repaired and continued to fly the ABCCC mission until her heroic loss in Iran along with her valiant crew. thanks to all my fellow warriors for your service and sacrifice. Wil
  20. Wow 3 replies and 3 winners. I can remember 1 day I worked a 14 hour shift and I got to eat 4 times that day. I think it was August of 1970. The Chief of Maintenence had disqualified all of the FMS enigne run qualified troops. There had been a large rotation of 50th personnel and we had a lot of 2 stripers on the Flight Line. There were2 of us in the 50th that were engine run qualified. They put me on a 6:00 PM to 6:00 AM shift. They put the other person on the 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM shift. when I showed up at 6:00 they had my night planned out. The Maint. truck would meet me at the assembly hangar and we would begin a fun evening of Engine runs, tows and refuel/ defuels. At around 9:00 they would take me to the flight line snack bar for about 15 min break. At 12:00 they would haul me to the Chow Hall for a 30 min. meal. About 3:00 they would haul me over to the Flt Line snack bar again. There were several days when we overlapped about an hour or 2. This went on for about 3 weeks before they had enough engine run troops to put us back on a regular shift. I'll find some more pics and we'll play again. Take care and have a great Thanksgiving, you have all earned it. Wil
  21. It's time to play Herkybirds favorite game "Name That Place". Study the following 2 photos and see if you recognize this palce. Good Luck. Wil
  22. I thought this letter would show how much our soldiers are appreciated. I should have posted yesterday, but anyway thanks to all my fellow warriors for what you have done for our country. A letter to a Hero's Family ________________________________________ A Soldier Comes Home On July 5, The Post published a letter from Martha Gillis of Springfield, whose nephew, Lt. Brian Bradshaw, was killed in Afghanistan on June 25, the day that Michael Jackson died. The letter criticized the extensive media coverage of Jackson's death compared with the brief coverage of Lt. Bradshaw's death. Among the responses was the following letter, written July 9 by an Air National Guard pilot and a fellow member of the crew that flew Lt. Bradshaw's body from a forward base in Afghanistan to Bagram Air Base. Capt. James Adair, one of the plane's pilots, asked the editorial page staff to forward the letter to the Bradshaw family. He and Brian Bradshaw's parents then agreed to publication of these excerpts. Dear Bradshaw Family, We were crew members on the C-130 that flew in to pick up Lt. Brian Bradshaw after he was killed. We are Georgia Air National Guardsmen deployed to Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom. We support the front-line troops by flying them food, water, fuel, ammunition and just about anything they need to fight. On occasion we have the privilege to begin the final journey home for our fallen troops. Below are the details to the best of our memory about what happened after Brian's death. We landed using night-vision goggles. Because of the blackout conditions, it seemed as if it was the darkest part of the night. As we turned off the runway to position our plane, we saw what appeared to be hundreds of soldiers from Brian's company standing in formation in the darkness. Once we were parked, members of his unit asked us to shut down our engines. This is not normal operating procedure for that location. We are to keep the aircraft's power on in case of maintenance or concerns about the hostile environment. The plane has an extremely loud self-contained power unit. Again, we were asked whether there was any way to turn that off for the ceremony that was going to take place. We readily complied after one of our crew members was able to find a power cart nearby. Another aircraft that landed after us was asked to do the same. We were able to shut down and keep lighting in the back of the aircraft, which was the only light in the surrounding area. We configured the back of the plane to receive Brian and hurried off to stand in the formation as he was carried aboard. Brian's whole company had marched to the site with their colors flying prior to our arrival. His platoon lined both sides of our aircraft's ramp while the rest were standing behind them. As the ambulance approached, the formation was called to attention. As Brian passed the formation, members shouted "Present arms" and everyone saluted. The salute was held until he was placed inside the aircraft and then the senior commanders, the sergeant major and the chaplain spoke a few words. Afterward, we prepared to take off and head back to our base. His death was so sudden that there was no time to complete the paperwork needed to transfer him. We were only given his name, Lt. Brian Bradshaw. With that we accepted the transfer. Members of Brian's unit approached us and thanked us for coming to get him and helping with the ceremony. They explained what happened and how much his loss was felt. Everyone we talked to spoke well of him -- his character, his accomplishments and how well they liked him. Before closing up the back of the aircraft, one of Brian's men, with tears running down his face, said, "That's my platoon leader, please take care of him." We taxied back on the runway, and, as we began rolling for takeoff, I looked to my right. Brian's platoon had not moved from where they were standing in the darkness. As we rolled past, his men saluted him one more time; their way to honor him one last time as best they could. We will never forget this. We completed the short flight back to Bagram Air Base. After landing, we began to gather our things. As they carried Brian to the waiting vehicle, the people in the area, unaware of our mission, stopped what they were doing and snapped to attention. Those of us on the aircraft did the same. Four soldiers who had flown back with us lined the ramp once again and saluted as he passed by. We went back to post-flight duties only after he was driven out of sight. Later that day, there was another ceremony. It was Bagram's way to pay tribute. Senior leadership and other personnel from all branches lined the path that Brian was to take to be placed on the airplane flying him out of Afghanistan. A detail of soldiers, with their weapons, lined either side of the ramp just as his platoon did hours before. A band played as he was carried past the formation and onto the waiting aircraft. Again, men and women stood at attention and saluted as Brian passed by. Another service was performed after he was placed on the aircraft. For one brief moment, the war stopped to honor Lt. Brian Bradshaw. This is the case for all of the fallen in Afghanistan. It is our way of recognizing the sacrifice and loss of our brothers and sisters in arms. Though there may not have been any media coverage, Brian's death did not go unnoticed. You are not alone with your grief. We mourn Brian's loss and celebrate his life with you. Brian is a true hero, and he will not be forgotten by those who served with him. We hope knowing the events that happened after Brian's death can provide you some comfort. Sincerely, Capt. James Adair Master Sgt. Paul Riley GA ANG 774 EAS Deployed
  23. Ray I should have thanked you for the great info. I must have seen Dan's post after yours and his name stuck. Any way thanks Ray with info like yours things are starting to come together. Bob, sure sounds like you were sucking the tanks dry on several of your missions. I think I remember 1 day when we went to the fight line to recover our plane. Got there about 17:15 and the plane didn't show until almost 19:00. Long day for the Crew. Kinda put us behind on getting it ready for the next days mission. You guys take care and be safe. Wil
  24. Dan Wow great info. As memory serves ms 62-1815 was the backup plane. It was located nest to the A model # 55-0004 on the ramp and was completely destroyed based on the pictures I have seen. I am now fairly convinced that I was assigned to 62-1809 which had the left wing burned to engine #1. It appears that it was repaired and went back to work and was the plane lost in Iran during the hostage rescue attempt(I think it was operation Eagle Claw). If anyone can verify that 62-1809 was the Cricket plane in July 1967 I would finally have all the facts. I would also like to know the tail # on the Hillsboro mission. Take care and stay safe. Wil
  25. Hey Tiny, interesting question. Just for your info some trivia. Our ABtripleC EC-130E's typical flying time was in excess of 12 hours per mission. We launched our plane at 0530 and it would land at 1820 or thereabouts. While on the subject of ABtripleC's. Does anybody hace the tail #'s of the 3 planes in Da Nang in July of 1967. I am confused about which plane I was on that was damaged in the attack on July 15. Our plane was flying the Cricket mission. The backup which I have come to believe was 62-1815 was totally destroyed along with an A model 55-0004. I think I have the answer but I would like confirmation. I would also like the number the night mission which I believe was the Hillsboro mission. If anybody has that info I would appreciate it. Take care. Wil
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