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AZG

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Posts: 22
 #1 
My old man was in Korea during 1954 and 1955.  Among his photos, I found two slides labeled "Aircraft Crash 2 Dead".  The date and location (other than South Korea) are unknown.  There are lots of Army guys standing around, an M-38A1 emergency vehicle pulled up and a fire still burning but not much else.  My old man was 8th Army I-Corps, Field Artillery Observation at Camp St. Barbara and Camp Casey.  I figure it must be a rotor wing aircraft or some type of observation plane given that it is an Army aircraft, but thats I can come up with.

In one of the photos the following text is visible ...

"S ARMY 4712"

The research talent and general mystery solving ability runs deeper here on the forum, and I an interested in any insight anyone can provide.

Thanks,
Mark
 Aircraft Crash 2 dead 2.jpg  Aircraft Crash 2 dead.jpg 

WaltW

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Posts: 430
 #2 
Doing a quick Hollywood cliche' "freeze and enhance" on the tail does confirm 4712.  The tail is an L-19/O-1 Bird Dog.  There is a serial allocated according to Joe Baugher's site for 51-4712 as an L-19, no fate listed according to Baugher.

Walt

L-19 tail 51-4712 crash Korea.jpg 

AZG

Registered:
Posts: 22
 #3 
Thanks for the info, you make it look so easy.  Until you said it, I didn't realize it is actually a picture of the tail hanging in the tree.  

Thanks,
Mark
ChrisBaird

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Posts: 836
 #4 

There are two possible L-19 crashes on here:

http://www.armyaircrews.com/fixed.html

It's probably not the 2 Oct 1954 fatal (formation flight, probably over an airfield--reviewing stand).

The 12 Jan 1954 one looks more likely (if your dad was there so early in that year)

(or it could be a wreck that is not even listed on this particular website)

I thought it might slightly resemble an L-20 (the rudder stenciling) but there doesn't appear to be any L-20 or U-6 with a "4712" serial.

You could request the Army report FOIA with the identifiers you have, you might get lucky if they find your partial 4712. 

https://safety.army.mil/HOME/FOIA

Cool to see color photos.

Chris B.

http://www.arizonawrecks.com

WaltW

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Posts: 430
 #5 
One thing that does support a near airfield event is the vehicle.  Painted orange and flying the airfield vehicle orange and white checkerboard flag.

I have been digging to find the IDs of the crew but nothing so far.

Walt
DaveTrojan

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Posts: 2,575
 #6 
Another thing that supports it being near airfield is the fact that the wreck is still smoking when personnel arrived. It must be close to the airfield.

AZG

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Posts: 22
 #7 
Your thoughts on the orange jeep make good sense.

Also - no one is wearing parkas or other winter gear - so maybe not January.  My old man was always going on about how cold that place was in the winter.

I have my dads orders that show what months he was over there.  I will dig them out to see if that sheds any light.

Both of the bases he was stationed at (Camp St Barbara and Camp Casey) have airstrips. St Barbara is now an ROK base and Casey is still US Army.  Looking at GE, there is a wooded hill just NE of the airstrip at St Barbara that looks similar to the terrain in the photo.

 38° 1'56.98"N
127° 8'34.58"E

Camp Casey is about 30 miles to the SW and its airstrip seems to be in a more open area.

I will let you know what I find from his orders.

Thanks,
AZG

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Posts: 22
 #8 
There are some hills 1/4 mile west of the Camp Casey airstrip also, but across a river.  If the plane came down in these hills I would think there wouldn't be so much pedestrian traffic (lots of guys standing around) at the wreck.

 37°55'14.96"N
127° 3'20.00"E

BTW my old man was not a first responder, he was arty obs.  He loved aircraft and later became aerospace engineer.  He was also a shutterbug.  He took pictures of every aircraft he saw in Korea.

If there was an aerial demonstration going on - he would have had his camera out.  I will look through his other photos to see if there are photos of an aerial demonstration - or ramp display etc that might be from the same time.
ChrisBaird

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Posts: 836
 #9 
You should post a request for info on that Army Aircrews forum.
Maybe they can get more specifics with their contacts.

Chris B.

PS - I hope your dad got to see Marilyn Monroe's USO show!
AZG

Registered:
Posts: 22
 #10 
If Marilyn Monroe was around, my old man was probably looking to see what plane she arrived in.  Not kidding. He joined up in December of 53 and didn't get to Korea until mid-54.

Thinking about the aerial display thing, I went back and dug through the slides again.  And it turns out that the photo below was next to the crash photos and other slides from the fall of 54.  Many of the fall 54 photos are labelled Camp St Barbara.

Not recognizing the type of aircraft in the crash photo, I never made the connection that this photo accompanied the crash photos.  It seems this photo was taken shortly before the mishap and the mishap aircraft is in the air in this photo.

I think this places the mishap as the 2 October 54 formation flight - and that was likely at Camp St Barbara.

I will post on the Army Aircrews forum and see if I can get the names of the aircrew.  I note that the database lists the aircrew as Lt. and Capt. with no names.

Planes Flying Over.jpgThanks,
Mark

AZG

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Posts: 22
 #11 
Description from the Army Aircrews site:

"Six L-19s were performing a formation flight demonstration at an altitude of 100' above a reviewing stand. The formation was divided into two groups of three planes with second group flying 3 seconds behind the first. Lead A/C of #1 section pulled up straight ahead, while the wing planes pulled up and to the right and left respectively. The #2 section followed the same pattern. Lead A/C of #2 section pulled up into the lead plane of #1 section causing the lead plane of #2 section to fall and spin to the ground. Lead plane of #1 section was crippled and made an emergency landing. No rehearsal was performed prior to accident."
AZG

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Posts: 22
 #12 
Based on GE terrain comparison, it looks like the direction of flight in the formation photo was to the south.  Also in the photo with the tail number showing, I think the strange colored sky behind the trees is actually a river with a sandbar - because the view is looking down hill.

These two bits of information would possibly place the wreck on the bank of the river near here:

38° 1'36.73"N
127° 8'22.29"E

I posted on Army Aircrews to see if I can get the crew names.

Thanks,
ChrisBaird

Registered:
Posts: 836
 #13 
Wow!

That's really great color photo documentation of an unfortunate Army accident that your father captured.

You're right, it must be the 2 October 1954 mishap.  And you've nailed down the location and probably the serial #.

They've even got smoke generators under their wings.

You should definitely request the report from US Army, just to confirm it.

I found another mention of it here:

http://koreanwar-educator.org/topics/dmz/p_dmz_army_aircraft_postwar_deaths.htm

Again, no names or location.  
Mid-air collision between two L-19s during a fly over exhibition of South Korean army units.  The other L-19 was crippled and made an emergency landing.  Unknown Lt. and Unknown Capt.

Chris B.
ChrisBaird

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Posts: 836
 #14 
A quick newspaper search and I just found one article in Pacific Stars & Stripes, no names.

This is the pilot:

https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/137320729

His grave stone says Infantry Liaison Pilot (killed in Korea Oct 2 1954).  


Chris B.

Attached Images
Click image for larger version - Name: pacific stars and stripes oct 03 1954.jpg, Views: 8, Size: 129.79 KB  Click image for larger version - Name: grave stone.jpg, Views: 7, Size: 569.08 KB 

ChrisBaird

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Posts: 836
 #15 
Could be Camp Casey...

Looks like they are only 9 miles apart???

I cant find that big dirt road up the mountain, which should still be there...

Need someone who is better on GE .. Walt??!!

Chris B.

comparison.jpg

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