CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Coast Guard Sector Corpus Christi members paused for a moment Wednesday morning to remember the sacrifice of an HU-16 Albatross airplane aircrew lost in the line of duty 43 years ago.
On Sept. 21, 1973, the crew of HU-16 Albatross CG2123 answered the call of duty and responded to a search and rescue case for a man reported overboard off the merchant vessel Berlin Ester, just to the east of the Port Aransas jetties.
As the crew began dropping hand-launched MK-45 parachute flares for the HH-52 helicopter aircrew searching behind them, a fire erupted in the cabin. The aircrew attempted to ditch the aircraft, but the intense smoke of the fire incapacitated them.
This event is a reminder of how dangerous search and rescue can be. Members of Sector Corpus Christi honor this crew’s legacy with a strong commitment to proficiency, pride, professionalism and serving others.
Lost on CG2123 were:
Lt. Cmdr. Francis Miller
Lt. j.g. Jerald M. Mack
AD1 Harold D. Brown
AM2 Benjamin Gaskins
AT2 John F. Harrison
AT2 John P. Pledger