A Note from The Virtual Wall
On 17 Apr 1970 Company A, 25th Aviation Battalion, was tasked with providing the 25th Infantry Division courier flight. A UH-1H Huey (tail number 67-17706) and crew was assigned and the round-robin flight begun, with passenger pick-ups and drop-offs at a number of locations.
The last stop was at the II Field Force Headquarters, with arrival at 1712 (5:12 PM). During the one-hour ground time, the crew took the evening meal, returning to the aircraft at 1800. Passengers were boarded and the Huey departed for Cu Chi at 1812. Fifteen minutes later, while crossing the Saigon River at an altitude of 70 feet AGL the aircraft struck two high-tension wires, broke up, and went into the water in a vertical nose-down attitude. Three men rose to the surface, one dead and two alive. One of the living survivors, Captain Zonne, died of injuries three days later; the other, SSG D. P. Ouellette, survived the incident. The dead were
Captain Robert J. Zonne, Jr, had completed a previous tour of duty as an infantry officer with A Company, 2nd Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division. He is buried in the US Military Academy Cemetery, West Point, New York.
- A Co, 25th Avn Bn, aircrewmen:
- WO Dean A. Harig, Superior, NE, pilot
- WO Frederick M. Simeonoff, Spenard, AK, copilot
- SGT Frederick C. Marsh, Egg Harbor City, NJ, gunner
- SP4 William K. Hunter, Lynchburg, VA, crew chief
- CPT Howard R. Andrews, Huntsville, AL, 25th Admin Co
- CPT Robert J. Zonne, Midland, TX, HHC, 25th Inf Div (died 04/20/1970)
- CWO Alvin E. Cross, Greensboro, NC, A Co, 25th Avn Bn
- SGT Jack D. Tuggle, Valparaiso, FL, A Co, 25th Med Bn
- SP4 Michael J. Weik, Fort Worth, TX, C Co, 125th Sig Bn
- PFC Howard D. Landry, Baton Rouge, LA, A Co, 53rd Sig Bn