We don't have an exact date for this, but one day between September 1965 and December 1967 a US Navy SPAD pilot from VA-145, flying from the USS Kitty Hawk, found himself feet dry and in a bit-o-trouble, as the fan had stopped turning. His best option was to put 'er down at a friendly airfield, which turned out to be a little 'ole place called Duc Hoa, home to a US Army observation outfit, the 74th Recon Airplane Company which flew the O-1 Bird Dog. Anyhoo, our SPAD pilot brought his steed in dead-stick and gear-up, scratching up the runway some, as well as the bottom of the bird and ruining a perfectly good prop. When the crash crews reached the Skyraider, our Navy man apparently climbed out of the cockpit and nonchalantly inquired as to the location of the Officers Club. That guy certainly had his priorities straight.
So, here are some pix of the bird in question after having been stood on her gear again and looking a bit worse for wear while being prepped for a lift back to the flattop by a CH-54 Skycrane. Only a few feathers have been stripped away here, but we hope this is satisfactory for the fella who made the request.
All photos: Jack Walters via the 74th Recon Airplane Company Website
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