Army

February 22, 2013

Military Intelligence — this week in history: February 23, 2013

Tags:
Ruth Quinn, Staff Historian
USAICoE Command History Office

Army Security Agency flies Last ARDF mission in Vietnam

The last formation of aircraft with LEFT JAB systems fly over Vietnam. Notice the extended antenna on the two systems in the front of the formation.

Feb. 16, 1973
In February 1968, Military Assistance Command, Vietnam, or MACV, established a requirement for an airborne platform along the demilitarized zone area, or DMZ, which would intercept enemy communications, including voice and Morse code signals, and use direction-finding equipment to locate enemy installations. After several false starts, three LEFT JAB direction-finding, intelligence-collecting platforms were fielded in December 1970 and assigned to the 138th Radio Research Company at Phu Bai, not far from the DMZ. The most distinguishing characteristic of the system was an oval antenna mounted under the belly of a U-21, a twin-turboprop fixed-wing aircraft. Originally designed for ground-based systems, the antenna could be extended after take-off.

On March 4, 1971, the 224th Aviation Battalion received word that a LEFT JAB aircraft was missing in action. The fate of the craft and its five-member crew was later confirmed by a report of the North Vietnamese News Agency, which claimed that a surface-to-air missile had downed a U.S. plane just inside North Vietnam. Killed in action that day were pilot Capt. Michael Marker, co-pilot Warrant Officer Harold Algaard, Spc. 6 John Strawn, Spc. 5 Rodney Osborne, Spc. 5 Richard Hentz and Spc. 5 Rodney Osborne.

This incident was the last of three Army Security Agency, or ASA, aircraft lost in Vietnam, and the only fixed-wing; the other two incidents involved helicopters. However, these losses did not ground flights near the DMZ. On the contrary, during the enemy’s 1972 Spring Offensive, airborne communications collection efforts in the area took on an even greater significance.

On Jan. 27, 1973, President Richard Nixon ordered a cease-fire. All remaining U.S. forces were directed to depart Vietnam within 60 days. During the cease-fire, ASA crews continued to fly collection missions that, despite the truce, continued to be subjected to antiaircraft fire. On Feb. 16, 1973, a crew of the 138th Aviation Company completed the Army’s final ARDF mission in the vicinity of Pleiku. Less than a month later, on March 7, 1973, the 509th Radio Research Group was discontinued, and the handful of its remaining soldiers boarded the last plane for home, bringing ASA’s 12-year tour of service to a close.

A memorial honoring Army Intelligence personnel killed in aviation-related incidents over the past 50 years is located at the Aviation Memorial Park on Fort Huachuca, at the corner of Hatfield and Irwin Streets. Six interpretive panels highlight the contributions of intelligence aviators from the Civil War through the War on Terror. Static displays featuring several different kinds of planes used by Army Intelligence are located within the air park, which is free and open to the public. See the park on the Virtual Tour at https://www.ikn.army.mil/apps/MI_HISTORY_TOUR/ and click on “Aviation Memorial Park.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Gabrielle Kuholski

Antiterrorism Exercise assesses installation readiness, reinforces important relationships

Gabrielle Kuholski First responders with the Fort Huachuca and Whetstone Fire Departments work together to get a wounded Soldier into an ambulance during the full scale exercise, Apache Warrior 2013, Tuesday. These first respon...
 
 

Labor Day Safety Message

Labor Day marks the traditional end of the summer season and celebrates the American worker and the contributions they make to our great country. I want to commend you on your efforts to control heat injuries through another hot summer. Your diligence and care for teammates contributed to an overall 20-percent decrease in accident fatalities...
 
 
Gabrielle Kuholski

VA clinical psychologist raises military sexual trauma awareness

Gabrielle Kuholski Michael Moore, Ph.D., military sexual trauma coordinator at the Southern Arizona Veterans Affairs Health Care System in Tucson, presents a session on military sexual trauma, or MST, in the Murr Community Cent...
 

 

Glass recycling now available in Sierra Vista

SIERRA VISTA – Clean glass bottles and jars can be dropped off for recycling at the new Sierra Vista Glass Recycling Depot as part of the city’s trial glass recycling project. The Glass Recycling Depot, located in the parking lot of the Pedro Castro Government Maintenance Center, is a glass collection point that is separate...
 
 
Maranda Flynn

FH Community Spouses’ Club accepting new members, shares plans for coming year

Maranda Flynn Fort Huachuca Community Spouses’ Club board members, Katrina LaDue and Lesley Hocker, (left foreground and background), assist new club members, Dana Edwards and Sandi Weishaupt, (right foreground and background...
 
 

Retiree Council shares news, notes Did you forget to care for your Family?

No one forgets to care for his or her Family on purpose. It just happens – more often than one might think when it comes to the military Survivor Benefit Plan, or SBP. Most often, retired Soldiers don’t know the federal law and the time limits it imposes on maintaining their SBP elections. If a...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin