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Helicopter Crash in South Vietnam, No U.S. Casualties

Dec. 8, 1962 - Two troop-carrying U.S. Army H-21 helicopters crashed and were subsequently destroyed, and five other helicopters and a single-engine transport plane were damaged today during military operations aimed at clearing Ca Mau, in the swampy Communist-infested southern tip of South Vietnam. There were no American casualties, but one Vietnamese government soldier lost a leg in one of the helicopter crashes, and five others were wounded in the operation. Three Communist Viet Cong guerrillas were killed. The government announced in Saigon that 18 guerrillas were slain and 44 captured in the first 3 days of the operation. The U.S. Army disclosed, meanwhile, that a U.S. Army sergeant was killed in a training accident, and a private was wounded by Communist fire last Thursday. The sergeant was identified as Richard D. Bonzel (pictured), 30, of Appleton, Wash. Pvt. L.C. Robert B. Eiler of Conneaut Lake, Pa., a U.S. Army helicopter crewman, was wounded by Communist fire.


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