From Korea and Vietnam to Afghanistan and Iraq, Army medical evacuation crews have gone above and beyond for wounded soldiers on the b
Moving wounded soldiers from the frontlines to the point of care as quickly and safely as possible in a war zone involves a lot of work and adrenaline—followed by sheer terror, a former Army medical evacuation pilot said.
“It was a life-changing experience for me,” said retired Col. Merle Snyder, while speaking on a panel of medevac pilots at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. While serving as a medevac pilot during the Vietnam War, the then-chief warrant officer was credited with evacuating more than 3,000 patients.
“It gave me reason for serving,” he said.
The Army plans to phase out all its old Alpha-model UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters within the next five years, one of the service’s top acquisition officers said.
The Army has used the Black Hawk since the 1970s, and the venerable aircraft has undergone several upgrades since then, with Victor and Mike being the newest, digital models.
The Association of the U.S. Army is asking congressional appropriators to fund additional Army National Guard helicopters as final decisions are made about the 2019 defense budget.