DHC-3 Otter Archive Master Index

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c/n 335

0-81717
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c/n 335

58-1717

0-81717 (unconfirmed)

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• 58-1717 United States Army. Delivered 16-Jul-1959. Designated as U-1A.

Initially assigned to the 18th Aviation Company, Fort Riley, KS.

Dec-1962 Travelled with the 18th Aviation Company to Vietnam in December 1962.

Feb-1966 Returned to the US and the Army Aeronautical Depot Maintenance Centre (ARADMAC) Depot, Corpus Christi, TX for overhaul.

Apr-1966. Returned to Vietnam joining the 54th Aviation Company.

Mar-1968 Re-joined 18th Aviation Company.

Dec-1968. 2nd Signal Group.

Feb-1970. 56th Transportation Company.

Mar-1970. 54th Aviation Company.

Jan-1971. %6th Aviation Company.

Feb-1971. 388th Transportation Company at Vung Tau. Remained in storage.

Aug-1971. Deleted from Army inventory.

• 0-81717. (Unconfirmed serial.) Passed to Cambodian Government for the Khmer Air Force. Late 1971.

Accident Near Pochentong, Vietnam. 26-Jan-1972. Suffered engine failure and was damaged in the ensuing forced landing. Remained derelict at Pochentong until the base was over-run by Khmer Rouge communist forces in April 1975 after which it was destroyed.

Destroyed

Otter 335 was delivered to the United States Army on 16th July 1959 with serial 58-1717 (tail number 81717). It was assigned to the 18th Aviation Company, Fort Riley, Kansas and travelled with the Company to Vietnam in December 1962. It entered service with the Company, whose history gives an example of a mission it flew on 28th December 1963, from Pleiku to Nha Trang with 37 jumped parachutes. In January 1965 it is recorded as arriving at Ban Me Thuot to be based there. It continued flying for the 18th Aviation Company until February 1966, when it returned to the United States, to the ARADMAC Depot at Corpus Christi, Texas for depot level overhaul. On conclusion of this work in April 1966, it was returned to Vietnam, where it joined the 54th Aviation Company.

In March 1968 81717 went back to the 18th Aviation Company, until December '68 when it was assigned to the 2nd Signal Group where it flew until February 1970 when it was taken in charge by the 56th Transportation Company and the next month it went back to the 54th Aviation Company. Its service with the 54th Aviation Company lasted until January 1971. It was again taken over by the 56th Transportation Company and in February 1971 went to the 388th Transportation Company, Vung Tau where it remained in storage until deleted from the Army inventory in August 1971. It was handed over that month to the Government of Cambodia, one of 18 Otters transferred to that country.

The transfer of the 18 Otters took place under a Military Assistance Program called “Project Flycatcher”.  After some training for Khmer Air Force pilots at Vung Tau, the Otters were flown to Pochentong Air Base outside of Phnom Penh, the Cambodian capital. In January 1972 81717 suffered engine failure and was damaged in the ensuing forced landing near Pochentong. It never flew again. By July 1973 sixteen of the eighteen Otters were in a derelict state at Pochentong, with only two still flying, and they succumbed shortly thereafter. All these Otters remained derelict at Pochentong until the base was over-run by communist forces in April 1975 after which they were all destroyed.

Full history up to 2005 courtesy of Karl E Hayes © from DHC-3 Otter - A History (CD-ROM 2005)