U1A Otter 76114

To read the history of Otter 76114 compiled by Karl Hayes in his book "DHC-3 Otter - A History"   CLICK HERE

UH-1H gets washed. 

C-47 Skytrain.  (Navy version RD-4) Dubbed the 'Dakota' by the British and Australians (Douglas Aircraft Company Transport Aircraft) but known world wide as the "Gooney Bird"

Various C-47's serviced Mapping Mission at different times. Three C-47s were assigned to and operated by Mapping Mission. Among them were N91260 and N17203. N91260 was damaged B.E.R. (Beyond Economic Repair) in the latter part of 1968 when it hit a Warthog hole while landing in a remote area. 

This aircraft was used for resupply and troop transport,  and occasionally as an R&R transport to Nairobi, Kenya and Asmara, Ethiopia (now Eritrea).

U-8 Seminole-Beechcraft Queen Air 

 UH-1-B (N1904R) Attacked by ELF (Eritrean Liberation Front) troops north of Keren, Ethiopia in July of 1965. Pilot: CW3 Jack Kalmbach, Mission Classification Specialist: SPC-4 Ron Dolecki, and Habte Mesmer (Interpreter) were taken prisoner.  


U-1 Otter:  Mapping Mission had one U-1 Otter which in August of 1969 was flown to Mannheim, Germany (a 55 hour flight)  by CPT.  Raines. There was a write-up about it in Army Aviation magazine two years later, as the flight was a distance record-maker for that type aircraft. 

U-9 Aero Commander (Leased)

The H-43 Kaman Huskie Helicopter was flow by the USAF Air Rescue 

In addition to the assigned C-47s, there were leases of Ethiopian Airline DC-3's, as well as an Air Djibouti DC-3 that Mr. Clyde Adams of Axum Air purchased from Air Djibouti and then leased to MM.  After the MM lease was completed it was sold to Air Comores.

The registration numbers on the aircraft  (helicopters, the U-1, U6's, and U8)  were all bogus.  The Cessnas were borrowed from USAID and had "legit" N-numbers. The bogus numbers replaced official US Army serial numbers (67-17300, etc.) due to local political sensitivities concerning the presence of US military aircraft within the Empire.  That's also why our aircraft were painted red & white; why the vehicles were painted gray and had those neat license plates (which are now rather valuable collectors items); why at first Mission military personnel wore civvies; and why we were not supposed to perform "Drill & Ceremonies"  (D&C).  The latter rule was for a few days knowingly and cheerfully ignored by Flight Line, at which time we marched back and forth in the mornings rather than riding in the back of pickup's.  The Ethiopians complained, so we stopped following a not-very-convincing stern warning from Command.

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The UH-1H replaced the UH-1-B. The four aircraft all arrived together in early 1969 on a C-133.

To visit Neil Aird's DHC-2 Beaver Web site CLICK HERE. Neil is trying to catalogue all DeHavilland Beavers ever made. N3060R can be found in his archives under the month of November.

U6 Beaver N3060R was one of the Beavers flown in the Sudan by Tim Wolfe, and later flown to Addis Ababa in June 1966.

Single Pratt & Whitney 450 hp R985 Wasp Junior SB-3 reciprocating radial engine).

CH-3C Sikorsky A five bladed main rotor, dual jet engines, and a drop-down ramp at the rear. It flew support for the radio stations, the C-130s doing the HIRAN picture shoots, and Mapping Mission field parties in 1965 and 1966. It was maintained by the USAF 1370th OMS. 

The UH-1H replaced the UH-1-B. The four aircraft all arrived together in early 1969 on a C-133.

For a downloadable or printable copy of  Lee Rodawalt's account of the trip:  Click Here
To view the Web page dedicated to Mr. Rodawalt's account of the trip Click Here.

U-6  Beaver  DeHavilland Canada, MM had at least 3 U6 Beavers, one of which was damaged BER or "Beyond Economic Repair".  The wings were flown out by C-47 and the fuselage was trucked back to Liddetta Airport. The hulk was taken to the Addis city dump after which it completely disappeared in a matter of less than 3 hours.

Originally registered in Aden and  leased from "Tony" Besse an export-importer in Djibouti. After the completion of the Mapping Mission it was purchased by Mr. Clyde Adams of Axum Air.

Cessna 185

C-47 N17203 was ferried from Addison, Texas to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia by Jack Miller, Lee Rodawalt and Gerry Johns (Dec. 1968-Jan. 1969).  Pictured L-R:  Lee, Jack, and Gerry. 

C-47 N17203  (more precisely an ex-Navy R4D) replaced N91280 (Snoopy) in January 1969. When MM completed it's mission in Ethiopia, this aircraft was transferred to Topographic Training Team, Tehran, Iran.

Ethiopian Airlines DC-3

UH-1B Iroquois: There were 5 B model UH-1's assigned to Ethi-U.S. Mapping Mission over the life of the program, four were lost to accidents, and one to hostile action taken by the Eritrean Liberation Front.  

The U-8 served a multi-purpose role in Ethiopia as Command Transport, Field Party light supply, and pay role trips.

UH-23 Hiller (Raven) Mapping Mission had 4 or 5 over the life of the program.  In 1969 and 1970 they were shipped out--some possibly to Iran.  The Hillers were best known for their excellent performance at high altitude.  Their problem was that they were just too small, and were limited in range.  They saw more useful service in Liberia.

Two Cessna 185's were transferred from the Sudan to Addis Ababa.