Grants, NM Helicopter Crash, Sep 1981


An Air Force helicopter slammed into a mountain during a combat training mission in New Mexico, killing four of the six crewmen.
The HH-53 Air Force helicothat crashed Tuesday near Grants, N.M., killing four, is known as a
"Super Jolly Green Giant" and is similar to those used in the aborted hostage rescue mission in Iran. It crashed at the 6,000-foot level of 11,301-foot Mount Taylor.
The two surviving crewmen, burned over 80 percent of their bodies, were in critical condition today.
Kirtland Air Force Base officials in Albuquerque said the cause of the crash was not immediately clear but the craft apparently was trying to make a mesa landing.
Two men guarded the site of the crashed helicopter, which was on a "low-level combat training mission" until recovery operations resumed today.
Killed were:
Capt. J. P. GANT, JR., 31, Meridian, Miss., aircraft commander.
2nd Lt. RICHARD J. WENDIN, Fairfield, Conn., pilot.
Sgt. TERRY O. CHANCEY, 27, Patterson, Ga., instructor flight engineer.
Sgt. LUIS CARABALLO, Bronx, N.Y., flight engineer.
In critical condition were Capt. RANDY K. JENSEN, 31, Sierra Vista, Ariz, the co-pilot, and Sgt. ROBERT E. HOON, 24, St. Louis, the crew chief.

Altoona Mirror Pennsylvania 1981-09-30



I was flown up to the crash site a day or so later after crash. We had to remove the two main engines. They were inspected to make sure they were running on impact.

Helicopter crash 1981 grants nm

I was a medic at the time at Kirkland AFB. We were assigned to transport hour father and the other individual. To BCMC burn center . I do remember some about them in fact they are part of my PTSD issues.

Pic of my father.

Ron, I would very much like to get some pic of my father.

Mt Taylor Crash comments.

I'm a retired USAF helicopter crew chief. We had a chat a few days ago about this crash. We chatted on the facebook group called Pavelow. If you're interested contatt me or join the group and read the thread.
Paula Kaski, MSgt, USAF Retired

Your Father

I flew with your father in RVN and have some photo's of him that you might like to see.

Ron Jackson

My father was in this crash.

My father was in this crash. I would like to know more.