HC-7 RESCUE 14(1) 5-DEC-1967 (Tuesday)

UH-2 Kaman Seasprite helo (151306 )(2) DET 104
USS Reeves (DLG-24) Combat Day
21 miles off North Vietnam coast
Water: 76⁰ Air: 85⁰ Wind: 10 knots Sea State: 1

Pilot – LT Andrew J. Curtin
Co-pilot – LTJG Stephen M. Salisbury
1st crew – AE-2 Robert T. Conlin
2nd crew – AN William C. Wood

Alert received – 1501: SAR COM
Vehicle departed – 1507: 11 miles
Arrived on scene – 1517: None
Located survivor – 1517: DF Steer – Day smoke
Begin retrieval – 1519: Day smoke
Ended retrieval – 1522: Returned USS Reeves
Survivor disembarked – 1523: Landed USS Reeves

F-8C Crusader 146907 “Old Nick 102” VF-111 (Sundowners) USN,
USS Oriskany (CVA-34)

LT. H. J. Meadows (4)

Aboard the USS Reeves (DLG-24) on South SAR station communications (CIC) received a MAYDAY at 15:01(3). The F-8C (Old Nick 102) aircraft had finished a photographic flight along Route 1A and had been hit by automatic weapons fire. His second plane loss, three months before LT Meadows’ plane had an engine failure, requiring him to eject (12). This time he managed to get feet wet and neared the south SAR station before losing control and bailing out. (4) At 15:01 the USS Reeves is alerted to a SAR incident and stations the helo detail. (6) Clementine launched at 15:09, with visual contact, located the pilot who had ignited a day smoke. 15:19 AN Wood, (swimmer) entered the water to aid the survivor (11). A text book rescue completed and helo returned to USS Reeves at 15:29. 15:30 USS Reeves secures the helo detail. (6)

15:45 the helo detail is set to launch Clementine II and inbound HS-6 Indian Gal #60. 15:53 Clementine launches, 20 minutes later Indian Gal #60 is on deck to transport LT H.J. Meadoows and two other passengers. Clementine II back on deck at 17:46. USS Reeves departs south SAR station to replenish fuel and supplies.

Notes: (not in order)
1) Numbering as per HC-7 Rescue Log (accumulative rescue number)
2) HC-7 1967 Command Report
3) HC-7 Det 104 Rescue report
4) “Vietnam – Air Losses” by: Chris Hobson, (with permission)
5) Aircraft position provided by W.Howard Plunkett (LtCol USAF, retired)
6) USS Reeves (DLG-24) Deck logs
7) Map – Goggle Earth
10) HC-7 History collection; Ron Milam – Historian
11) Kaman Rotor Tips – March-April 1968
12) Ejection History. Org (web site)

(Compiled / written by: Ron Milam, HC-7 Historian – HC-7, 2-1969 to 7-1970, Det 108 & 113)