≡ Menu

It’s Raining Humvees!

Wonderful…


…But sometimes things don’t work out for Mr. Wonderful

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • PA Cat June 28, 2021, 10:12 PM

    According to the Army Times, “A Germany-based cavalry scout was convicted Wednesday of destruction of government property and making a false official statement for his role in a botched Humvee air drop that destroyed three of the vehicles during an April 2016 training exercise.

    A judge found Sgt. John Skipper, who was in charge of verifying that the parachutes were properly rigged, had intentionally cut their straps, causing hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage, according to a 7th Army release. . . . The soldier filming on the ground could be heard cheering and laughing. He received a letter of reprimand last year for his unprofessional conduct both on camera and in sharing the video.”

    https://www.armytimes.com/news/your-army/2018/05/09/soldier-found-guilty-of-cutting-parachute-straps-in-botched-humvee-air-drop/

  • Kevin in PA June 29, 2021, 5:22 AM

    Nice find, PA Cat.
    I watched the first vid and enjoyed the aspects of planning, rigging and coordinating such an event. The US military really is top notch.
    And then as I watched the second video, I thought, what kind of an idiot laughs at this level failure.
    Those Hummers are paid for by the taxpayers. There is nothing funny about a mission failure.
    I’m just glad this was not an urgent military mission.
    What kind of a moron Sargent would do such a thing? Letter of reprimand? WTF!
    How about a year in the military jail for that stunt…. or better yet, take the cost of damages out of his paycheck for the next 20 years.

    As my father used to say, “dumb bastards.”

  • Bill in Tennessee June 29, 2021, 7:22 AM

    My tax dollars at work. Hmmm, well even with that failure rate, it’s still better use of my tax dollars than anything that Jackass-In-Chief Biden can cook up.

  • gwbnyc June 29, 2021, 8:11 AM

    for an encore that laffing jackass vomited five more pounds of my money in his lap.

    off-topic:

    surveyor’s prism, Hudson@Canal Street, NYC
    0320HRS 6/29/21

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/24dee025458d735d38383b7b158440f644d3133818af35dc1563cebacd9bf969.jpg

  • Casey Klahn June 29, 2021, 8:20 AM

    I was going to say something critical of the airborne concept, and then you proved my point before I could say it.

    It takes girth to move the earth. Armor & Mech.

  • Richard June 29, 2021, 8:29 AM

    First video is very cool with some exceptional photography. I saw the second video a couple of years ago and didn’t want to view it again. Disgusting to learn that the drop was deliberately sabotaged by some pathetic moron. I can’t comprehend why anyone would think this would be the least bit funny.
    Seems no one takes it in the shorts, time after time, like the American taxpayer.

  • ghostsniper June 29, 2021, 8:41 AM

    Guess the army has slacked off a bit over the past 40 years.
    A soldier had a camera in the field.
    In the 70’s we weren’t allowed to wear watches with batteries.
    This was in Hohenfels, a large training area, which I attended 3 times.
    Also did Inglestadt and Graf 3 times.

    The sgt was reduced in rank to E1 and given a bad discharge.
    That’s gonna hurt.

    In the summer of 1977 I was driving a brand new Oldsmobile Metro Ambulance on 52 mile runs from Wildflecken to Wurzburg. We worked in 48 hour shifts. 48 on, 48 off. It was late at night and the call came in and I was first driver that night. An officers wife was passing kidney stones like a Pez dispenser and was in intolerable pain. They could do nothing for her at our little dispensary and had to go to the 33rd Field Hospital in Wurzbug. I loaded her up in the metro and it was then that I found out how severe it was. A doctor and a nurse were going to ride in the back to deal with her. I had never had either in my ambulance before. Us medics were always the norm.

    We headed out to the autobahn and the Dr put his hand on my shoulder and told me to get there as fast as possible. The road to the autobahn was a bumpy cobblestone/backtop deal and the ride wasn’t very comfortable for the patient and she screamed bloody murder the whole way. The doctor kept telling me to go faster but the narrow road winded through small villages like you’ve seen in pictures and I was going as fast as safely possible.

    I had been navigating these small german roads for the past 3 years in large army trucks filled with soldiers and pulling demolition filled trailers at night and in extremely cold bavarian winters – the only time they held field exercises. I was very familiar with the area. Just 3 months earlier the post held a ceremony giving awards to soldiers for all sorts of accomplishments. I received the highest honor for driving the post had ever given. 21,000 accident free miles in combat conditions, more than 3 times that of the 2nd place driver.

    Finally we got on the Wurzburg autobahn and I opened the throats on that big 455 V8. The speedometer registered 135 but I believe we were going faster than that. It was night time. Amazingly enough, at that speed a Volkswagen “Jeans” passed me. Jeans is what the germans call a beetle. That veedub was going faster than 135.

    Every few minutes the woman patient would pass a stone and her screaming was unbearable, even with the window closed between the front and the back. I could see the doc and nurse tending to her in the mirror and I kept trying to push the peddle through the floor boards. I plugged my earplugs in. (at the time earplugs were required on a soldiers uniforms at all times) They slightly muffled the screams.

    About 10 miles out from Wurzburg there was a “bang” under the hood and immediately the dashboard lit up. Oh no, now what? I kept rolling. It was dark as hell out on that autobahn and other vehicles were scarce. I detected the ambulance acting different. The temperature light was on. A few minutes later the oil pressure light came on. I was about 2 miles from the hospital.

    There was another “bang” under the hood and the ambulance became difficult to steer. Fortunately the autobahns are mostly straight. As I wheeled into the city I discovered the brakes would barely work. So it was difficult to steer, almost no brakes, what next? Smoke. Yes, smoke started billowing up around the edges of the hood. OMG. I kept my cool, best I could, and stayed focused on eliminating that screaming banshee in the back of my ambulance. My nerves were completely trashed.

    Finally, I saw the big lit up red letters EMERGENCY ROOM and a whole fleet of medical personel standing on the ramp. I swooped in and did a 180 and backed up to the ramp. I hit the dash button for the rear door lock and a very large male nurse reached in and snatched the gurney all the way up and out of my ambulance and onto the ramp with 1 hand. That was one powerful human being.

    I stood there and watched as they wheeled the screaming woman inside with the entire fleet of assistants caught up in the slip stream. The screaming was over, for me. Now it was just me and my ambulance, in the zero degree air. I turned and saw flames licking up around the edges of the hood and the engine was no longer running. It had seized.

    I grabbed the fire extinguisher, popped the hood and saw that the entire engine burning and glowing red hot. Holy Kow! I emptied the FE into that engine compartment but it still cooked. Now I was concerned it was gonna blow. A dood came out of the hospital and I told him to call the fire dept. Bracing my feets against the ramp I pushed the burning ambulance away from the building nut could only push it to the middle of the driveway area. Then I went back to the ramp and fired up a much needed smoke and waited for the fire truck. The fire truck showed up and ensconced the entire ambulance in purple K snuffing all the air, and the flames.

    I went inside and called my CO and told him what happened. He blew up. Told me they were sending a wrecker and that I had to stay right with the downed vehicle. I was no to leave it at all. It was 0 degrees out and I was getting pretty cold. But I stayed there. For 3 hours, when the wrecker arrived.

    Back at post everybody was pretty bummed out that our brand new ambulance was no more. We had just got it like 3 days before and I was the 2nd driver to drive it. The other ambulance drivers never even got the chance to check it out. A couple weeks go by and my CO processed an article 15 on my ass. “Misappropriation and destruction of government property” was the charge. At that time I was unaware of something called the Nurnberg Defense, but it was all I had. The medical doctor in charge at the time, a Major, told me repeatedly to go faster, and that was what I did. I did the best I could do until the equipment failed. The JAG officer told me I was obligated by law to not exceed the legal military speed limit which was 60 mph. Therefore I was guilty of the charge. Rather than stick strictly to the letter of the law the JAG “balanced” justice. He could have put me out of the army (I only had 8 more months to go in a 4 year enlistment) with a bad conduct discharge but he didn’t. Instead, he reduced my rank from SP4 to E1, forfeiture of all pay and restriction to post until discharge, suspended. Thats right. Suspended. That meant, as long as I had no more disciplinary issues none of the punishment would happen. shwew My lucky day.

    A month or so later the XO called me into his office and told me they were giving me an accommodation letter based upon the testimony of the doctor and the nurse that rode in my ambulance and the wife of the officer that had been the patient that I took to Wurzburg. The accommodation letter was framed and said it was presented for performance above and beyond the call of duty. It’s in a box in the workshop with all my other army stuff.

  • Sam L. June 29, 2021, 8:51 AM

    A BIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIG OOOOOOOOOI-RAH for you!!!!!

  • Jack Lawson June 29, 2021, 9:17 AM

    I came across a former soldier in a chain clothing store standing in front of me some 5 years ago. He was wearing a ball cap from the 82nd Airborne. We started talking and he said he’d spent 14 years in the Army and resigned as a senior sergeant. I asked him why he hadn’t completed his 20-year career.

    His answer was… “I was in charge of the school that taught packing Humvees and other cargo items for air drops. On the last training drop 3 Humvees were totally destroyed. My battalion commander called me in to explain this failure. So, I told him that I don’t have enough time left in the day to teach these people how to properly pack and rig the cargo drop loads.”

    “Why is that?” he asked.

    “Because Sir, these people spend the first 5 hours of the day attending mandatory diversity, gender tolerance and alternative sexual awareness training, which leaves us 3 hours to train them on air drop packing. That priority is your decision, but I don’t have enough time left to teach these people their mission properly.”

    He went on… “My commanding office looked like he was going to have a stroke. The arteries on the side of his neck were bulging and his face was beet red as he yelled at me… “That is also your mission… the Army’s mission… and if you criticize diversity training one more time here or talk about this to anyone else, I’ll bring you up on charges!”

    Then he told me… “As soon as my latest enlistment was up… I got out… resigned. Someone else can put up with that insanity… but not me.”

    Jack Lawson
    Member, Sully H. deFontaine Las Vegas Special Forces Association Chapter 51
    Author of “The Slaver’s Wheel”, “A Failure of Civility,” “And We Hide From The Devil,” “Civil Defense Manual” and “In Defense.”
    “We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand watch as our guardians in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm. A soldier must seize every advantage to defeat his opponent. He must strike swiftly and strike hard… he who dares… wins. But under all circumstances those guardians must stand ready to protect the innocent and those too weak to defend themselves…”
    Often spoken quote of New Zealander Martin O., Killed In Action – Africa 1979 – He was my friend.

  • Jack Lawson June 29, 2021, 9:19 AM

    I came across a former soldier in a chain clothing store standing in front of me some 5 years ago. He was wearing a ball cap from the 82nd Airborne. We started talking and he said he’d spent 14 years in the Army and resigned as a senior sergeant. I asked him why he hadn’t completed his 20-year career.

    His answer was… “I was in charge of the school that taught packing Humvees and other cargo items for air drops. On the last training drop 3 Humvees were totally destroyed. My battalion commander called me in to explain this failure. So, I told him that I don’t have enough time left in the day to teach these people how to properly pack and rig the cargo drop loads.”

    “Why is that?” he asked.

    “Because Sir, these people spend the first 5 hours of the day attending mandatory diversity, gender tolerance and alternative sexual awareness training, which leaves us 3 hours to train them on air drop packing. That priority is your decision, but I don’t have enough time left to teach these people their mission properly.”

    He went on… “My commanding office looked like he was going to have a stroke. The arteries on the side of his neck were bulging and his face was beet red as he yelled at me… “That is also your mission… the Army’s mission… and if you criticize diversity training one more time here or talk about this to anyone else, I’ll bring you up on charges!”

    Then he told me… “As soon as my latest enlistment was up… I got out… resigned. Someone else can put up with that insanity… but not me.”

    Jack Lawson
    Member, Sully H. deFontaine Las Vegas Special Forces Association Chapter 51
    Author of “The Slaver’s Wheel”, “A Failure of Civility,” “And We Hide From The Devil,” “Civil Defense Manual” and “In Defense.”
    “We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand watch as our guardians in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm. A soldier must seize every advantage to defeat his opponent. He must strike swiftly and strike hard… he who dares… wins. But under all circumstances those guardians must stand ready to protect the innocent and those too weak to defend themselves…”
    Often spoken quote of New Zealander Martin O., Killed In Action – Africa 1979 – He was my friend.

  • Bones June 29, 2021, 9:58 AM

    Video #1 is from Sicily Drop Zone, Ft. Bragg, NC. You see that the heavy drops work out fine, when some a$$hole doesn’t mess with the equipment. Generally.

    I was a Rifle Platoon Leader in the 82d during the jeep, not humvee era. A friend in the armor battalion said they lost one out of five tanks they dropped using LAPES.

    https://youtu.be/dgg3iRaVnbw

  • Casey Klahn June 29, 2021, 10:38 AM

    hahaha that’s a funny one. I love the engine burned flames part.
    My story: not as good. But, another LT and I were issued a jeep to drive from our Seattle area homes to Ft Lewis for an extra 2 week course run by active duty goons. He was always running late when I picked him up, and, most are not aware that being late in the army is worse than rape. I floored the pedal on that jeep down I-5 to Ft Lewis and made it to roll call on time. Late that afternoon, the major at HQ cornered me and said, “Casey, here’s a report from the WSP clocking you this morning at 90 MPH in an army jeep. Did that happen?” I said yes, sir, that was me. The staters had avoided stopping me out of professional courtesy, he said. As I turned to go he said, “that’s one hellofa jeep!”
    hmm. I’m going to morph that story to include a fire, when it gets to my grandkids someday.

  • Snakepit Kansas June 29, 2021, 11:00 AM

    Ghost and Casey should write autobiographies.

  • H (science denier) June 29, 2021, 11:11 AM

    I can tell that some of you people have never been in what Bobby Troop so quaintly referred to as the “goddam army” in MASH.

    Well, I’m not condoning it, in fact I’d agree that the young sergeant should go to the stockade for an extended stay, but I understand how stuff like that happens. I’ve seen it, several times. You get a certain personality suffering for an extended period of time beneath a martinet for whom “leadership” is a foreign concept, with seemingly no way out, lots of things can happen. Sometimes you get sabotage and sometimes you get suicide. For the record, those assholes who tried to cashier Ghost are among that class of alleged leadership, and a pox upon their houses. I suppose it was ever thus.

    When I was at shake-n-bake skool at Fort Benning, we were constantly being yelled at to “do it like the real thing”. And one dark night on a road ambush problem, a candidate in an adjacent class decided to do just exactly that. He was the patrol leader when they ambushed a column of several vehicles, including a Jeep 5/4-ton truck. The gas caps on Army vehicles are fairly large and he had no problem dropping a grenade simulator down the filler, whilst yelling “fire in the hole” the proscribed three times. The 5/4 burned to cinders. Well, they did tell him to “do it like the real thing” after all.

    Shortly afterward, we were all specifically ordered to “quit doing it like the real thing.” I don’t recall ever hearing what they did to him about it, but I doubt very seriously he skated on it. Generally speaking, when you washed out of shake-n-bake skool you went straight to Viet Nam, instead of going after graduation with the rest of your class, so our mantra was “what are they gonna do, send us to Viet Nam?” I would image in his case, the outcome was somewhat different.

  • Kerry June 29, 2021, 11:43 AM

    Did anyone else get a mild feeling of anxiety watching the 1st video, before the part where the camera view is from one of the descending Humvees? It made me nervous watching them from the point of view of the back of the C17, but somehow the view from one of the Humvees as it descended dismissed the anxiety, like everything is okay, nothing was harmed in this demonstration! Kind of like the difference between being the driver rather than the passenger of a fast moving car.

  • gwbnyc June 29, 2021, 12:16 PM

    Kerry-

    I’ve had the view the humvee has and there is no sense of altitude, falling, etc included. the look up at the plane briefly overhead is a memory.

    a full, “normal” canopy was an anticipated, and assuring sight.

    it was like stepping into a picture- everything is just “there” in a totality.

  • PA Cat June 29, 2021, 7:45 PM

    I think Jack Lawson probably already knows why a cargo plane carrying 5 heavy armored vehicles crashed shortly after takeoff at Bagram Airfield in 2013. Here is a video about the disaster made by a guy who uses flight animation software to reconstruct air accidents (I won’t link to any videos from CNN). This video has the advantage of including information from the NTSB as to why the load shifted, which brought down the plane:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_HawXo2DXvI&ab_channel=TheFlightChannel

    Apropos of PC in the 82nd Airborne: my dad was in the 82nd during WWII, when the Army had no time for Pride Month or similar stuff. There was one incident that happened to him and his buddy during Operation Husky (1943 invasion of Sicily) that they always laughed about but would doubtless get canceled for now. My dad was your basic Pennsylvania Dutchman (i.e., a guy of German descent from PA), while his buddy was the son of Italian immigrants, and grew up speaking Italian as fluently as he spoke English. There are two aspects of the story that explain why my dad and his buddy laughed about it when telling their war stories: 1) the buddy was happily married and a devout Roman Catholic; 2) his own mother wouldn’t have called him handsome– he looked much more like Yogi Berra than John Travolta.

    Anyway, my dad and his buddy were driving their Willys Jeep (which had, of course, not been airdropped into Sicily) along a winding dirt road through a small Sicilian village. They were going slowly so as not to run over any goats, chickens, or other critters, when one of the local guys dashed out of a doorway, jumped up on the hood of the jeep, and pointed at my dad’s buddy: “For you, no woman tonight! For you, ME!”

    As my dad told it, his buddy immediately crossed himself and shouted, “Oh, Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!”– followed by a string of Italian cuss words that my dad decided needed no translation. My dad was driving and floored the jeep in order to get the guy off the hood and get back to camp. They were a few minutes late, but the CO had no problem with their explanation and in fact laughed with them. I wonder what would happen if someone told this story at Ft. Bragg today.

  • EX-Californian Pete June 29, 2021, 8:00 PM

    Gee, if only they would have let those new “LGBTXYZ” or Transfag recruits rig and oversee those drops!
    RIGHT?

  • Casey Klahn June 29, 2021, 10:29 PM

    PA Cat. Don’t tell me they hurt that little Sicilian gay guy.

    That is some funny, right there. No, do NOT tell it to the CO at Ft Bragg today.

    It makes you wonder how the WW II GI ever won the war with such moral corruption, the way they were so politically incorrect and such.

  • PA Cat June 29, 2021, 11:16 PM

    No, Casey, my dad and his buddy didn’t hurt the Sicilian gay guy– neither one of them was the type to get into fist fights, and they figured that a stream of Italian cuss words got the message across. I’m thinking, too, that the gay guy didn’t want any more reminders of Mussolini’s rants.

  • Casey Klahn June 30, 2021, 9:13 AM

    PA Cat, your dad was a great man. More so than can ever be described.

    It’d be a damn shame to let him down, after these many years hence the war. Those guys gave their lives the way one would toss a flower in the bin. Simply on order, and often or many times on their own initiative.

    I know you know this. I make it my mission to remind Americans what happened in WW II, and as time lengthens on, I find that I have to outline basics about the war because much of what we knew about the war is now unknown by plebeian citizenry.

  • MIKE GUENTHER June 30, 2021, 3:31 PM

    Our radar site was up on a hill above Bann, Germany. One dismal morning, I was driving down from the site on my way back to barracks (dormitory, if truth be told because…Air Force.) after a night of CQ, when I came around a blind curve to see about 15 or 20 cows coming up the road towards me. A steep bank on the right and a significant drop off on the left so nowhere to go but through those cows. I hit the brakes and managed to steer through about half of them before centering one in the flank with my right front headlight. Knocked the cow ass over tea kettle and I managed to steer into the ditch on the bank side of the road. I was more shook up than the cow, who rolled to his feet, gave me a baleful stare and continued on up the road.

    The farmer came up to my window yelling and cussing in German and waving a staff. Couldn’t understand a word he said. After he left, I put the truck in 4wd and backed out of the ditch to inspect the damage. It was a ’72 Dodge Power Wagon Crew Cab 4×4. The heavy steel frame headlight guard was pushed back into the right front quarter panel, which pushed against the right front passenger door, pinching it closed. About $600 bucks worth of damage according to the motor pool.

    I got scolded by my maintenance officer for driving too fast, although I was driving under the posted speed limit because the road was damp. I got out of it because there was supposed to be a sign posted above the village saying that livestock used the road and there wasn’t. So I didn’t end up having to pay for a damn milk cow and all the milk it might produce in it’s lifetime.

  • ed in texas June 30, 2021, 7:24 PM

    The story is that a young Rod Serling saw a friend of his get smeared by a “biscuit bomb” (food pallet drop) that had it’s chute stream while in the 503rd in the Phillipines in WWII. Got him to thinking about odd things happening.