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Falklands Crash Sites

Old 16th Nov 2008, 22:32
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Hi Edmund,
I still haven't found that footage of the Mirage crashing. Further to The Claw's post of radar ops. The following thread has one of the Argentine radar ops as a poster. He also has access to a small group of Argentine veterans who are researching the conflict. It might give further info as to the radio conversation that took place between Garcia Cuerva and Argentine controllers?

Falklands "What if...?" - Key Publishing Ltd Aviation Forums
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Old 17th Nov 2008, 10:47
  #42 (permalink)  
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Teeej
As usual your research is amazing. Thank you and well done.
Mr Bernoulli, thank you for a very interesting source. Any chance we can develop this and get a copy of the map?
I am currently looking at some very interesting stuff provided by Donadille who led the three Daggers against Steve Thomas and Sharky Ward on 21st May 1982.
All three Argentinean pilots survived this one and we have some absolutely amazingly different accounts about what actually happened.
The main stories are from Steve, Donadille and Sharkey.
I have spoken with Steve Thomas recently about this and it is hard to reconcile with Sharkey's book.
We all see air combat from our own little world and, let's face it, how many times has the biggest bulshitter won the fight! - In the debrief (At least until we went to the American ACMR's)
For those of you who have read Sharkey's book, consider this:
They are both on a parallel track heading west. Steve is to the north and Sharkey to the south.
They initiate a parallel turn to the right. Half way through the turn passing approximately north Steve inverts (this was his habit) and sees two Daggers in quite close formation passing under him.
I have yet to get from Steve what he said to Sharkey but I do know he aggressively turned on these two guys (Donadille and Senn) and shot them down in quick sequence. This sequence is exactly mirrored by Donadille. Sharkey subsequently shot down Piuma, who for some reason had neatly presented himself directly in front of him.
None of us can figure out what happened with Piuma. He ran in initially to the north of the formation but was eventually shot by Sharkey heading from the south to north east??
If we look at Steve's and Donadille's account there is something badly flawed about Sharkey's

Thoughts from the forum?
ES
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Old 17th Nov 2008, 20:55
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Geoff Fish helicopter crash?

I used to work with a guy called Geoff Fish who was a helicopter pilot during the war. He used to recount a tale of a mechanical failure which lead to his helicopter crash landing in a pond. I've tried googling this in order to find out more info but I drew a blank so can anyone on PPRuNe add any details?
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Old 17th Nov 2008, 21:36
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Edmund,
No problem. Hopefully the contacts will be able to add to the events surrounding Garcia and his Mirage?
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Old 22nd Nov 2008, 19:44
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Mr Spencer

Good Morning Sir , let me introduce myself , Enrique Rey del Castillo , Retired as Captain - Long Range Radar operator during the Falklands Conflict in the Islands -
I do need to apolagise because my english is not as good as it should be -

Thank you and Regards Enrique

In the islands two long range radars

One from Air Force Westinghouse ANTPS 43 3D 220 NM range

One from Army Cardion ANTPS 44 2D 200 NM range

I was the operator for the one in the army
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Old 22nd Nov 2008, 20:12
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Smile

Enrique

Your English is better than my Argentinian - welcome, bueno verle.
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Old 22nd Nov 2008, 20:25
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AI R

Thank you Sir
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Old 22nd Nov 2008, 21:06
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Welcome Enrique!

Regards

TJ
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Old 22nd Nov 2008, 21:11
  #49 (permalink)  
 
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Mr TEEEJ

Thank you Sir

I was suggested by Mr Tommy Joe from Military Photos Forum to come into this Forum -

Thank you for your welcome

Regards Enrique
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Old 22nd Nov 2008, 21:37
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Mr Spencer Mr Teeej Mr AIR

Good Afternoon Sir Mr Tommy Joe from Military Photos told me that you were in search of info regarding Captain Garcia Cuerva -

I will request all the info prior to him been shot down by us to the Argie Forum and bring it to you -

On that afternoon thge Air Force Radra was in contact with Garcia Cuerva , he reported low fuel and that he was coming into the Airport , Mayor Silva from the Air Force was talking to him , instructed garcia cuerva to eject , Garcia Cuerva states that his plane is in good shape that he was confident it will land - After some back and forward with this and not been able to convince Gracia Cuerva to eject , Mayor Silva from Air Force Rdara lets CIC /PCDA ( Air Post Command in the islands ) that the plane is coming in - At that moment CIC/PCDA lets me know about this ( Army Long Range Radar ) and lets the Triple A units know about it -
At that moment in time we were under Red Alert with Reds incoming , Silva instrcts Garcia Cuerva to use the corridor in use for Helos - He comes in low , 180 Knts and what we think he did was either let go external tanks or shoots its missils wich for triple A even though had been told about this plane they take it as Red and not Blue -
He comes in north off Sapper Hill , unloads either external tanks or missils , missinterpretd by our Tripple A , shot by 35 mm , impacts hit belly of the plane , plane makes right turn heading south , still in comunication with Silva to whom heis last words were " They are shooting me " Plane looses altitude , doen not explote in the air , impacts right were land meets sea line - General location would be due south of Port Stanley right by the SEa Line ( were sea meets land )

Regarding what Garcia Cuerva encounter while in the air or which Royal Air Force Plane fought with him , I don't know let me ask in the Argie Forun =

Regardes Enrique Rey
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Old 22nd Nov 2008, 23:22
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A million thanks for your contribution, Enrique. It is fascinating to hear the Argentinean side of this.
I am travelling at the moment but will have much more to ask you when I get my feet back on the ground.
A warm welcome to the forum.
ES
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Old 22nd Nov 2008, 23:48
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Edmund Spencer

Thank you Sir for your welcome -

Regards Enrique
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Old 24th Nov 2008, 19:05
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Hi everybody. Itīs my first message. I knew about you thanks to Enrique. Iīm very pleased to meet you and hope to be useful in all questions you are writing.

I would like to make a question about something of 24th may downings. In some texts I could read about a fourth Dagger that scaped from Sea Harriers. Did it really exist? "Oro" flight was only three planes. But just this zone (Pebble island), was selected for a Dagger from "Plata" flight to return home after attacking in San Carlos Bay. "Plata" took off from San Julian just before "Oro" and was entering San Carlos entrance when listened by radio the interception by Sea Harrier of their fellows. According to 1st Lt Callejo, just after this he dropped his bombs over orange fuel tanks in land in the north shore of San Carlos Bay and then turned left to look for cape Dolphin. After finding it, followed his turning left towards west. Just close to finish his cross over Falklands sound, saw a frigate on his right, just north east of Pebble island (The SAM trap I think- Broadsword+Coventry). A missile was fired against him who faced the threat turning right (toward the missile) and jettisoning his fuel tanks (in fact one of them didnīt drop). After avoiding the missile, changed his turn to look for land, flying supersonically. He followed his way towards west overflying Pebble and the rest of islands north of West Falkland until he passed them where he slowed and raised the plane in order to save fuel to get home. He didnīt saw any Sea Harrier but think could be the fourth one.

Regards from Spain
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Old 24th Nov 2008, 19:34
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As I recall from my various detachments in MPA, both the Herc and VC10 Navs had topo maps of the islands that showed the known outlying aircraft wreck positions. These maps were updated (renewed) occasionally, with the details being transferred to the new map. At the end of a det the map was passed to the incoming crew. Came in very useful for a bit of aerial sightseeing, and I distinctly recall seeing an isolated Pucara wreck in the south-west of East Falkland, as well as a Dagger on West Falkland. Both airframes very faded but recognisable as their respective types.

I wonder if any of said navs could get the wreck site details off the charts, and pass to those who are interested?
Pucara wreck is that of Major Tomba shot was shot down by Lt Cdr Ward on 21st May 82 south of Goose Green. (Saw it myself in 89, that what happens when you end up on the same heilcopter as AVM Eng and Supply and your trip from one of the West Falkland radar sites to MPA turns into a battlefield tour, with a landing behind Government house at Stanley to boot, pity I had no film in the camera at the time)

The book 'Falklands, The Air War' written in 1986 has the UTM grid refs of all of the known wrecks at the time for all of the known losses including if memory serves the ones on the Jasons. Unfortunately, I lent my copy to a Falklands vet a while back, hence I can not put a list up of the known wrecks.
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Old 25th Nov 2008, 06:57
  #55 (permalink)  
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Jualbo,
Very many thanks for your contribution. This clears up a mystery for me.
Here is what happened:
Andy Auld and I were on CAP to the north of the Falkland Sound under the control of HMS Coventry and HMS Broadsword. We had literally just arrived on task from HMS Hermes so were quite well off for fuel (Relatively speaking!)
HMS Coventry and HMS Broadsword were were just north of Cape Dolphin.
A few minutes after arriving on station the controller announced that the force had gone "Air Raid Warning Red" and to stand by. Several seconds later orders to vector west at full speed to intercept inbound targets, strength unknown but believed to be three or four.
We increased speed to about 540 knots and dropped down to 200 feet over the sea heading approximately 270 degrees. The controller was giving us 'Bravo' control which is essentially range and bearing of the target and it was up to us to sort the geometry out and self position for the intercept.
At about 50 miles contact was lost by one or other of the ships but we kept heading and speed on the off chance of making an autonomous pick up. As it happened, contact was regained at about 40 miles and the B control continued. Andy led the left turn for the intercept and called 'Tally' at about five miles. I was in a fighting wing on his starboard echelon. He fired first at the left hand Mirage flown by Lt Castillo. This was Oro 2 in a formation of three Mirage V's. He then quickly shifted aim and release his second missile at Oro 3 flown my Major Puga. The leader, Captain Raul Diaz then went into a hard right turn, clearing his wing in the process, and was hit by my missile as he was turning through about south.
Now this is where the confusion arose. I was visually tracking him as his burning aircraft descended towards the high ground south of Pebble Island and wondering why he hadn't ejected. Moments before the impact several things happened. I saw the ejection sequence begin with the bullet pulling an orange parachute out of his cockpit. I heard the emergency beacon on 243 MHz. At the same moment a fourth Mirage flashed under my nose heading west at high speed and I called a break towards it to try and get another missile off. As a result of this I only saw the fireball on impact of Diaz' Mirage out of the corner of my eye and never saw his fully developed parachute. The fourth Mirage quickly out distanced me and it wasn't even worth trying a missile shot at the rapidly opening range.
We both thought at the time that this fourth Mirage might have been part of Oro but as you quite correctly pointed out it was pure coincidence that he was in the same piece of sky at the same time. I also recorded that that I had shot down "number 3" when what I meant was I shot down the third in sequence. (Actually the leader.) History has always credited me with shooting down Castillo who was the only member of Oro not to survive the encounter.
You can imagine my surprise when I discovered as late as last year that I had in fact shot down Raul Diaz and my delight in receiving several emails from him describing what happened from his perspective! I quote:
"I continued to look at the aeroplane of Puga to see if he had ejected but saw no reaction. (Apparently he hit the sea with a partially deployed parachute and spent five hours swimming to shore. He survived the ordeal! ES) In the middle of the turn I was hit by your missile. My Mirage began to vibrate terribly, the flaw mermaid sounded and the lights of serious flaws lit all. I was left without commands. It began to enter smoke into the booth and strong sounds. I attempted to eject with the superior rings but I couldn't reach them. I had to make do with the inferior ones among the legs. When the ejection began I believed I was hitting the water because the pressure was unbearable. Single memory two instants of the ejection, when I saw my knees towards the sky and when the parachute opened up. During the ejection I had luxacion of the right elbow and fissures of the 4a and 5a lumbar vertebra.

He recovered and was flying Mirages again four months later!
ES
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Old 25th Nov 2008, 07:27
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I had luxacion of the right elbow and fissures of the 4a and 5a
So have I but but not from an ejection and have been leaning to walk again for the last three weeks. for the uninitiated a sublaxation is when the disk actually bursts damaging the nerves in one or both legs, causing numbness and partial paralysis in the feet. Common in ejections.
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Old 25th Nov 2008, 08:10
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Sounds extremely unpleasant, Naval. Can we ask what happened? I hope you are on the road to recovery.
What exactly would a luxacion of the elbow be?
I think Colonel Diaz' reply to me was most probably written in Spanish and Google translated or something similar so several of the phrases are a bit hard to follow. The general meaning is pretty clear, though.
The whole letter is a wonderful document.
ES
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Old 25th Nov 2008, 08:59
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Enrique,
I have my feet back on terra firma now and can devote a bit more time to this thread.
Once again, many thanks for your contribution.
Do you know anything more about the detail of the conversation between Cuerva and the radar controllers. I have been trying to establish to what extent he was short of fuel or his aircraft damaged. Why would the controllers suggest he eject?
I have spoken with several Australian Mirage III pilots and they reckon the landing at Stanley would have been possible but highly risky. They are also surprised that he would have been so short of fuel after such a short engagement. There are some stories of Cuerva disappearing off the radar screen for twenty minutes after the combat during which time he is credited with straffing some of our ships. (I have a feeling this was endorsed by Pierre Clostermann but goodness knows where he got this from.) It was, supposedly, after this that he made his request to land at Stanley. I am also curious about the long burst of cannon fire either just before or just after he was shot at by his own AAA. Was this what set them off or did he clear his wing of tanks and pylons etc causing the ground forces to think they were under attack. Again this is a little questionable as he would have been directly over Stanley town. Most pilots would not drop their tanks over a built up area. (And for what reason? It looked like he was positioning downwind for a left circuit to land at Stanley on the westerly runway so why not clear the wing over the sea to the south?)
The second area of interest for me is the Penfold/Hale vs Ardilles combat on the same day. Are there any records or memories of the conversation between Ardilles and his radar controllers? You see, it is of great interest to us why Ardilles shot a rear hemisphere heat seeking missile at Hale head on from about ten miles and, apparently, nearly got him!! Martin Hale gives a graphic account of this missile tracking towards him and was amazed to find out, recently, that the shooter was not a Mirage III with Magic and Matra but a single Mirage V with no radar and Shaffrir heat seekers! The British radar, slightly embellished by Tony Penfold's "Multiple Boguey" call, indicated there were several hostiles approaching the merge. History records it was Ardilles on his own.
Enrique, I would be very interested if you can add anything to these questions.
Many thanks in advance.
ES
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Old 25th Nov 2008, 09:00
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ES said: I think Colonel Diaz' reply to me was most probably written in Spanish and Google translated or something similar so several of the phrases are a bit hard to follow. The general meaning is pretty clear, though. The whole letter is a wonderful document.
Without being cheesy Edmund, the thread and not just the letter has some historical significance too. Welcome to jualbo and any other guys from 'the other side' who might be reading this.
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Old 25th Nov 2008, 09:13
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Al R
I meant no disrespect and I humbly apologize if it came across this way.
I hugely appreciate the contribution from our Argentinean readers and only regret my own inadequate language skills.
I treasure Colonel Diaz' letter in the way it is written and would not wish to change it in any way or form.
ES
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