Today we stop and mourn the 18 men – 15 SASR soldiers and three crew – who died in the midair collision of two 5th Aviation Regiment Black Hawk helicopters while on exercise on Townsville’s High Range on 12 June 1996. One Black Hawk crashed immediately, killing 12 personnel on board, while the other was able to make a crash landing but burst into flames, killing six. Crash survivors, soldiers from the other helicopters and exercise staff risked the flames and exploding ammunition to rescue their comrades and retrieve the bodies of the dead. Fourteen personnel were later officially recognised for their part in the rescue and evacuation operation. The names of the dead are: Captain Timothy J. Stevens Sergeant Hugh W. Ellis Corporal Michael Bird Corporal Andrew Constantinidis Corporal Darren R. Oldham Corporal Brett S. Tombs Lance Corporal Gordon A. Callow Lance Corporal Glen O. Hagan Lance Corporal David J. Johnstone Trooper Jonathon G. Church Trooper David Frost Trooper Timothy J. Mcdonald Corporal Mihran “Avi” Avedissian Corporal Darren J. Smith Signalman Hendrik “Rick” Peeters Captain KJ Hales Captain JB Berrigan Corporal MC Baker May you all rest in eternal peace. Thank you for your service. ... See MoreSee Less
Remember it like it was yesterday. Cared for a couple of the men that survived the crash at the Lavarack Barracks Medical Centre.
Last I heard JJ (Loadmaster) returned to flying on active service in Timor.