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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 158625
Last updated: 17 September 2020
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Type:Silhouette image of generic A6 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Grumman A-6A Intruder
Owner/operator:VMA(AW)-242 USMC
Registration: 152608
C/n / msn: I-156
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:5
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Da Nang AB, South Vietnam -   Vietnam
Phase: Take off
Departure airport:Da Nang AB, South Vietnam
Destination airport:
Possibly the worst ground aviation accident of Vietnam War occurs on March 23 1967 at Da Nang Air Base, South Vietnam, when traffic controller clears US Marine Corps Grumman A-6A Intruder, BuNo 152608, of VMA(AW)-242, MAG-11, for takeoff, but also clears USAF Lockheed C-141A-LM Starlifter, 65-9407, of the 62nd Military Airlift Wing, McChord AFB, Washington, to cross runway.

A-6A crew sees the C-141 Starlifter at last moment, veers off runway to try to avoid it, but port wing slices through C-141's nose, which immediately catches fire, load of 72 acetylene gas cylinders ignite and causes tremendous explosion. Of the six crew, only one, the load master survived, escaping through the rear hatch of the C-141.

The A-6A Intruder overturns, skids on down runway on back, but both crew, Capt. Frederick Cone and Capt. Doug Wilson, survive, and crawl out of the smashed canopy after jet stops. Some of the A-6A's ordnance load of 16 X 500 lb. bombs and six rocket packs go off in the ensuing fire.

Military Airlift Command crew on board the C-141 killed were Capt. Harold Leland Hale, Capt. Leroy Edward Leonard, Capt. Max Paul Starkel, S/Sgt. Alanson Garland Bynum, and S/Sgt. Alfred Funck. This is the first of two C-141s lost during the conflict, and one of only three strategic air lifters written off during the Vietnam War.


1. Hobson, Chris, Vietnam Air Losses. Hinckley UK: Midland Press, 2001, page 93.

Revision history:

19-Aug-2013 08:24 Uli Elch Added
19-Aug-2013 08:44 Uli Elch Updated [Date, Registration, Cn, Total fatalities, Other fatalities, Location, Country, Phase, Departure airport, Narrative]
15-Mar-2016 21:09 Dr.John Smith Updated [Operator, Location, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
27-Dec-2019 21:57 stehlik49 Updated [Operator, Operator]

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