Camp Lejeune, NC Helicopter Crash, Nov 1984



Camp Lejeune, N.C. (AP) -- It will take four to six months to determine what caused on on the Marines' newest and largest helicopters to burst into flames and crash, killing six servicemen and injuring 11 others, including two from Pennsylvania, a Marine spokesman said.
Capt. Dave Winston, aviation safety officer for Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 464, said it would take four to six months to determine what caused the fire and crash of the CH-53E Super Stallion Monday afternoon.
Seventeen soldiers were aboard the huge helicopter when it caught fire and hit the ground Monday afternoon while lifting a heavy artilery piece, a 155mm howitzer.
Rescuers found three of the dead Monday and the other three Tuesday morning, said Capt. Norma Stewart of New River Air Station.
The burned and mangled wreckage was surrounded by guards Tuesday. The helicopter was broken in two, with the rear section twisted and one engine lying on the ground. The rotors were snapped off.
Bits of burned debris were scattered around the flat landing zone, and the howitzer the helicopter was lifting sat upright, but tilted.
Camp Lejeune spokesman Capt. Craig Fisher said some of the 11 injured suffered bruised internal organs, but "most are fractured bones, arms and legs. People are in serious condition, but the prognosis is good."
Five of the six dead were identified as:
BRIAN R. JONES, 32, of Harlan, Iowa.
Lance Cpl. SCOTT A. McENEANY, 23, of Fairport, N.Y.
Pfc. KEVIN J. KAISER, 19, of Kenmore, N.Y.
Cpl. RICKY C. WILLIAMS, 23, of Sumter, S.C.
Lance Cpl. DAVID D. WELLS, 22, of Salem, Ind.
Fisher later said WILLIAMS and WELLS were listed as presumed dead because no positive identification had been made.
JONES was identified as the helicopter pilot and McENEANY as a member of the flight crew. The others were members of B Battery, 1st Battaliion, 10th Marine Regiment.
The injured Marines were taken to the U.S. Naval Hospital on base, Lt. S. B. Jack said.

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CH 53 Crash Nov 19 1984

Cpl. Ricky C Williams and I were friends. I was also in Romeo Btry 5/10 and went to Battalion later. I was present during the aftermath and will never forget the smell from the crash. I recall speaking with Ricky and he wanted me to get him out of the field. That thought remains in my mind. I wonder if he had a premonition of something wrong about to happen. RC Williams will forever be in my mind. I don't live to far from Sumter, SC.

Keith Murchison
Former Romeo 5/10

Bravo battery

I was in bravo at that time on gun 4. I will never forget shaking pfc kaiser hand that morning when Sgt to hill introduced us and said he was replacing me so I could go to my classes. Tohill and wells had taught me so much the few weeks that I knew them that training in the classes was a breeze. I will never forget those guys and I have wondered about the survivors a lot over the years. You guys feel free to call 9013613901

teri huntley call me 330 234

teri huntley call me 330 234 3012 anyone want to contact me feel free

I remember that day

I stayed back at the barracks that day. SGT Tohill
gave me an old school camouflage top just before the flight.
I also remember that Lcpl Wells gave his drivers license to
someone, I forget who, just before the flight.
Very sad day.

I'll never forget this day

My Unit was at the grenade launcher range that day. We watched as the Helos came in. It looked like the cable never released from the helo. My recollection is that they were dropping the artillery. What a sad situation. I was in ITS at the time. God rest their souls. I think of them often. Semper Fi.

Helicopter crash Camp LeJeune 1984

My husband Sgt Phil Huntley was there. His gun was suppose to be the one lifted. At the last second Lt Hessler switch I believe gun 4 for gun 1.
phil pulled 4 Marines out. 3 survived the 4th did not.
We lost a friend that day. Only dog tags left.
This event has never left Phil. He thinks about it daily. He is currently fighting for his life due to the ground water contamination at Lejeune.
Did some receive your medals for this? Phil never received his. We've been in contact with now General select Hessler. Ironically he was in our sons chain of command. Our son was 3wks old the day of the crash. I'd like some information about the medals. Hessler put you all in for them and then left. Phil never received his. I want his blues correct when I bury him.
Semper Fi to you all. God Bless
TErri Huntley

1984 CH53 crash

We had just eaten our MRE's and we're waiting for the CH53s to come pick us and the 155mm Howitzers up. Just before they approached I was sent to road guard, hold back the traffic on the road as the birds came in. I was a member of gun 1 or section 1. Well as I remember it section 1 was the first group to be loaded then the Howitzer was hooked up and they we gone. As I was on road guard I missed departing with my section. I just jumped in with the guys on the second or third bird. While in flight I see the crew chief on our flight looking out the small window freeking out, it was to loud to hear but I could tell he was yelling FUCK!!! In his helmet.

I knew something bad had happened. We then quickly dropped the Howitzer, landed and ran to help. We could not even get close it was so hot blazing with fire. I was thinking these are my guys, my friends but at the same time grateful to God I missed the flight. I always found ways to miss future Helicopter training. God bless the guys who died that day.

Semper Fi

Robert Hughes
B Battery 10th Marines in 1984

Tom was the CP

Hey Tom,
Good to hear from you even though it has been 2 years since your post. You and Brian did what you could. It was the failure of the disconnect coupling that put you in that position, and you both did what you could; had it failed while in flight, who knows who would have made it. Be in peace ol' squadron mate.

Dave Clark
1st Lt 1984

Jeff stidham

I had the privilege of meeting Jeff, family and friends on November 10, 2013. I will never forget that weekend. This is a man who embraces life and family. This accident will always have an impact on his life. Instead of dwelling on it he has embraced his family and appreciates what life has given him. He has hit many rough roads but he has a wonderful wife, children and a beautiful granddaughter and they work through it together. I went to the bar they always went to on the Marine Corp Bday. I was able to enjoy great stories, Marine memorabilia and nice people. He was even nice enough to call to make sure I made it home safely from my trip. Thank you Jeff, family and friends. God Bless u all!!!!

Platoon Sergeant

I was the Platoon Sergeant on the helo op. Think about you guys often. Will expand when I get on the desktop. Semper Fi, Brothers!