HC-7 RESCUE 70 (1) 24-May-1969 (Saturday)

SH-3A Sikorsky Seaking helo Det 110 Big Mother #77
USS Oriskany (CVA-34) Routine Day (2)
70 miles off North Vietnam coast

Pilot – LTJG Jeffrie E. Wiant Jr.
Co-pilot – LTJG Ted E. Cash
1st crew – AMS-3 Michael J. Laws
2nd crew – AMS-2 Robert H. Elerick

RF-8G Crusader 146844 NM-6 VFP-63, (Light Photographic Squadron – 63) (Alfagators) USN USS Oriskany (CVS-34)

LTJG Steve L. Ritchey

The Oriskany lost its second Crusader within five days when an aircraft had an engine flameout during a photographic reconnaissance mission. The cause was presumed to be accidental rather than battle damage. (5)

1600-1800 – USS Oriskany underway as before. Launched and recovered helo #42. On a base course of 240⁰ at a speed of 22 knots. 16:30 RF-8G Buno 146844 of VFP-63, Det 34, pilot Ltjg Steve Ritchey, USN, flamed out and the pilot was forced to eject, approximately position bearing 060⁰ range 40 miles. Helo 77 is enroute. 16:59 Helo 77 has the pilot insight, is picking him up. 17:35 recovered Helo 77, with pilot on board. (12)

No HC-7 1969 Command report available… No Det 110 Recue report available.

1) Numbering as per HC-7 Rescue Log (accumulative rescue number)
5) “Vietnam – Air Losses” By: Chris Hobson (with permission)
10) HC-7 History collection; Ron Milam – Historian
12) USS Oriskany – Deck Logs

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