Gabriel Trujillo

Army of the United States
09 March 1950 - 15 February 1971
Raton, New Mexico
Panel 05W Line 110


Combat Infantry

Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign


The database page for Gabriel Trujillo

09 Apr 2005


by a home-town friend,
Jerry Sandoval

A Note from The Virtual Wall

Seven men died in the crash of a UH-1H helicopter (tail number 68-16554) from B Troop, 2nd Squadron, 17th Cavalry:
  • Aircrew, B/2/17th Cav:
    • CWO Richard N. Concannon, Keokuk, IA, pilot
    • WO Joseph S. Burke, Houston, TX, pilot
    • SGT James P. Cobb, Depew, NY, crew chief
    • SP4 Zebulon M. Johnson, Syracuse, NY, gunner

  • Passengers, L Co (LRRP), 75th Infantry:
The UH-1, with four crewmen and medic SGT England aboard, departed Camp Eagle at approximately 1840 hours 15 February 1971 during a period of marginal weather on an emergency night evacuation mission. The pilot reported a ceiling of 300 to 400 feet and one-half mile visibility. Fifty minutes into the mission, a difficult extraction of the wounded man, SGT Trujillo, was made using a McGuire rig and the aircraft departed for Camp Eagle. [NOTE: A McGuire rig effectively is a stretcher lowered by cable; it dangles from the aircraft after pick-up.] 1LT Smith had volunteered as "bellyman" for the McGuire rig extraction.

The flight back to Camp Eagle was in instrument conditions. As the aircraft approached Camp Eagle, the pilot reported vertigo and turned control over to the copilot. A normal ground-controlled approach (GCA) was established with the aircraft proceeding inbound until about the three-mile point, where the aircraft descended below glide slope in a right turn and disappeared from the GCA controller's radar scope. At about 1952 hours the aircraft impacted nose-low, broke up, and burned. There were no survivors.

According to an informal report, the dangling McGuire rig had caught in trees and pulled the aircraft to earth.

From the VHPA database.

Sergeant Trujillo's brother, PVT Paul Trujillo, died in Vietnam on 04 Nov 1971.

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Last updated 08/10/2009