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Helicopter Accidents Hanshin and Oppama, Japan

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  • #16
    Re: Helicopter Accidents Hanshin and Oppama, Japan

    Another question for the old-timers. In the spring of 1953 there was a fatal involving an HMR 163 helicopter that I understand tangled with high power lines. I believe that it occurred over Camp Pendleton. There were three fatlities but I seem to recall that a Crew Chief by the name of Sanchez was involved. The unit was based at MCAF Santa Ana at the time. I was new to the unit at the time and don't recall much of the details except there was not much left of the craft except ashes.

    Stan Hendrickson


    • #17
      Re: Helicopter Accidents Hanshin and Oppama, Japan

      Hello Stan,

      This crash involved HRS-1 BuNo 127788 of HMR-163 on the 3rd of June 1953. It was piloted by Captain Donald. F. Bolinski with 1st LT. Wayne Morse as co-pilot. Cpl Angel Sanchez was the crew chief.

      They were on a S&R mission in the Laguna Hills, after a false report of a jet that had expolded in mid air, in the area.

      They hit HT lines in El Morro Canyon and sadly all perished in the crash.


      • #18
        Re: Helicopter Accidents Hanshin and Oppama, Japan

        Thanks Sidsiko.

        I have often wondered about the people involved. I knew Cpl Sanchez only briefly, but was involved in the recovery of remains of the helicopter. It seems that HP 1 was perhaps a jinxed number because it was involved in a head-on mid air collision with a helicopter from HMR 162 in 1954 near Tokyo Bay with the loss of four lives.


        • #19
          From Dan Leonard <>

          These pictures were taken by my uncle, John Leonard. Unfortunately, that's all I know. I'm guessing he was a pfc.
          Attached Files