Search  
Click Here!    
Good Morning America World News Tonight 20/20 Primetime Nightline WNN This Week
March 24, 2003
 
HOMEPAGE
NEWS SUMMARY
US
INTERNATIONAL
MONEYScope
WEATHER
LOCAL NEWS
ENTERTAINMENT
ESPN SPORTS
SCI / TECH
POLITICS
HEALTH
TRAVEL
FEATURED SERVICES
RELATIONSHIPS
SHOPPING
DOWNLOADS
WIRELESS
INTERACT
VIDEO & AUDIO
BOARDS
CHAT
NEWS ALERTS
CONTACT ABC
Great Skiing and Riding! (Ad Served by Mediaplex)


(AP Photo)
U.S. Copter Crash in Afghanistan Kills 6
U.S. Helicopter on Mercy Mission Crashes in S. Afghanistan, Killing All Six People Aboard

The Associated Press


Print This Page
Email This Page
See Most Sent
Pockets of Resistance Line Baghdad Route
U.S. Firepower in the Persian Gulf
Have Questions About The War? E-Mail Us
BAGRAM, Afghanistan March 24

A U.S. Air Force helicopter on a mercy mission to help two injured Afghan children crashed in southeastern Afghanistan, killing all six people on board, the U.S. military said Monday.

The HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter from the 41st Rescue Squadron at Moody Air Force Base in Georgia was on its way late Sunday to pick up the children, who had suffered injuries to the head, said Army spokesman Col. Roger King said. It was not clear how they had been injured.

"You think about the sacrifice these guys made, especially in this case where you've got military personnel who are conducting a flight that's basically a humanitarian mission," King added. "They're trying to go out and save some Afghan kid's life it's wrenching."

The remains of the six people on board all Air Force members have been recovered and were to be flown to Bagram Air Base and prepared for transfer back to the United States, King said.

"The investigation will probably bear out as to whether weather played any part in it."

There were thunderstorms in the area when the helicopter went down, King said.

King said the area is not considered a hostile region, and there are few U.S. military operations there.

Press officer Master Sgt. Richard Breach said the cause of the crash was being investigated but: "This is not believed to be the result of enemy action."

U.S. Central Command confirmed that the helicopter was not shot down.

"The names of those killed are being withheld until their next of kin can be notified," Moody Air Force Base spokeswoman Lt. Alysia Harvey said early Monday.

The helicopter crashed late Sunday about 8:50 p.m., some 20 miles north of Ghazni, Afghanistan, according to officials at Bagram Air Base, north of the capital, Kabul. Ghazni lies 50 miles southwest of Kabul.

U.S. military officials in Washington and Afghanistan said the medical emergency and the helicopter flight were not in connection with Operation Valiant Strike, a mission involving members of the Army's 82nd Airborne Division in southeastern Afghanistan.

That mission, which began earlier this month, is meant to root out remnants of the al-Qaida and Taliban believed to be operating in the area.

"The Air Force is a close-knit family and the loss of one of our own affects us all," Brig. Gen. John Folkerts, commander of the 347th Rescue Wing at Moody, said in a statement. The air force base is located in Valdosta, Ga.

"We wish to express our deepest condolences to the family members of these brave airmen and want them to know that we will not forget the valuable contributions they made to this country and the impact they made on the Air Force," Folkerts said.

Ten days ago, about 20 gunmen fired on a U.S. special forces convoy on the road between the town of Gardez, about 40 miles to the east of the crash, and Khost. The attack led to a firefight involving coalition F-16 and A-10 aircraft and a half-dozen of Apache helicopters. Five of the assailants were killed, and there were no coalition casualties.

The last helicopter crash in Afghanistan was Jan. 30, when an Army Black Hawk helicopter the Army's version of the Pave Hawk on a training mission crashed near the Bagram air base, killing four.


photo credit and caption:
An Army Blackhawk helicopter is under inspection by U.S. Air Force personnel on the flightline in Bagram, Afghanistan, Monday, March 24, 2003. A U.S. Air Force Pave Hawk helicopter, a variation of the Blackhawk, on a mercy mission to help two Afghan children crashed overnight in southeastern Afghanistan, killing all six people on board, the U.S. military said Monday. (AP Photo/Gurinder Osan)

Copyright 2003 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

 
 
Great Skiing and Riding! (Ad Served by Mediaplex)
  RELATED STORIES
International Index
More Raw News
 
 INTERNATIONAL HEADLINES
12 U.S. Soldiers Believed Captured
Liberated Iraqis Doubt U.S. Goals
France Working on Saddam Exile Deal?
Could Saddam's Elite Troops Be Defecting?
First Iraq Airstrike Facts

 


Copyright 2003 ABCNEWS Internet Ventures.
Click here for:  HELP   ADVERTISER INFO   CONTACT ABC   TOOLS   PR   TERMS OF USE   PRIVACY POLICY

Family of sites:      ABC.com        ABC Family        ESPN.com        Disney.com        FamilyFun.com        GO Mail        Movies.com