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    AMEDD Museum - 507 Witchdoctor [Image 1 of 7]

    AMEDD Museum - 507 Witchdoctor



    Photo by Francis Trachta 

    Army Medicine History

    On 09 MAY 2003, 1900 hours, the 1st Forward Support MEDEVAC Team, attached to the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, received an urgent request to evacuate an 11-year-old Iraqi child who had fallen victim to a land mine. Two aircraft were launched from the team’s location at Tikrit South Airfield to the pick up site located in the vicinity of the Iraqi city of Samarra. Upon arrival, Witchdoctor 619, the lead aircraft, landed to tend to the injured child, while the second aircraft, Witchdoctor 507, circled overhead ready to lend assistance. While circling, Witchdoctor 507 came under heavy enemy fire from the ground. It is not clear whether this aircraft was hit or whether the crew was seeking to avoid being hit, but the aircraft was observed making an immediate evasive descent. While in that descent, the aircraft struck a single strand of cable car type wire strung appropriately 50 feet above the surface of the Tigris River and crashed. Witchdoctor 507 came to rest twenty feet from the shoreline in approximately four feet of water. Witchdoctor 619, still on the ground with the injured child, witnessed the incident and responded immediately to attempt rescue the downed crew. Despite their heroic efforts, CW3 Brian Van Dusen, the Pilot in Command, CW2 Hans Gukeisen, the Copilot, and SGT Richard Carl, the Crew Chief, could not be saved. SGT James Sides, the Flight Medic, was rescued by Witchdoctor 618 from certain death and overcame significant physical injuries to make a full recovery.

    AMEDD Museum Collection, JBSA, Fort Sam Houston, Texas, 05MAY2022. (U.S. Army photo by Francis S. Trachta/Released)



    Date Taken: 05.04.2022
    Date Posted: 05.09.2022 11:58
    Photo ID: 7182188
    VIRIN: 220505-A-VG084-9967
    Resolution: 4291x3017
    Size: 1.71 MB
    Location: FORT SAM HOUSTON, TX, US

    Web Views: 53
    Downloads: 2