Friday, November 08, 2019

Fullbore Friday

We don't do enough of our most recent conflicts on FbF ... so today a story from last decade of a Little Bird bringing giants with big medicine.

Hearing Cianfrini’s warning, Chief Warrant Officer 2 Mark Burrows, 35, banked right to evade bullets from a heavy machine gun that had opened up across a field. Then, a second machine gun began firing at them. Burrows turned again, only to face a heavier barrage.

“The whole world just opened up on us, it seemed like,” Cianfrini said in a telephone interview from Iraq on Tuesday. “We zigzagged; we did whatever we could do to get out of the guns’ target line. Then, we started taking fire from behind. That is what took the aircraft down.

The Kiowa started to shake violently, its main rotor damaged.

Burrows said he decided to head into the field, but the aircraft began to spin uncontrollably, and at about 20 feet above the ground he had to shut down its power. The helicopter hit the ground tail first, bounced over a canal, crashed nose down and slid into a ditch beside an adjacent dirt road.

Cianfrini climbed out one door, and Burrows got out the other. They met at the nose and discovered that, miraculously, they had suffered only scratches, they said. The Kiowa by then was on fire, its engine blowing up inside. Insurgents were shooting at them from across the field, and the pilots could hear the rounds hitting the burning helicopter.

“Where’s your weapon?” Burrows yelled to Cianfrini.

“I have no idea,” came the reply.
Head on over to the DenverPost for the rest of the story.

H/t JD.

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