An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Home : News : Article View
NEWS | Aug. 21, 2023

Alaska National Guard Rescues Two Hunters After Plane Crash

By Sgt. Seth LaCount, 134th Public Affairs Detachment

JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska - The Alaska Army National Guard rescued two hunters 15 miles north of Chakachamna Lake near Merrill Pass Aug. 16.

The Alaska Rescue Coordination Center asked the Guard for assistance after receiving a call from a good Samaritan aviator who spotted the hunters’ downed aircraft while flying in the vicinity. The RCC confirmed the incident after one of the hunters contacted the RCC via an InReach satellite phone.

Aircrew assigned to Golf Company, 2-211th General Support Aviation Battalion, departed from Bryant Army Airfield on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in a hoist-capable HH-60M Black Hawk helicopter at about 4 p.m. The crew included two pilots, a crew chief and flight medic.

Chief Warrant Officer 2 Bradley Jorgensen, pilot in command, said two hunters were taking off in a fixed-wing aircraft when they abruptly crashed at the north side of a landing strip. The plane was no longer air-worthy and left the hunters stranded.

After the 90-mile flight west from JBER, the National Guard flight crew landed on the south side of the landing strip to evacuate the two men.

“Our flight medic Sgt. Matthew Tucker was the first Soldier on ground and conducted a routine medical check on the two hunters,” said Jorgensen. “No first aid was required.”

The aircrew flew the hunters to the Birchwood Airport in Chugiak, where Alaska State Troopers met them. 

Jorgensen said the rescue took about two hours. He said good visibility, accurate information and coordination from the RCC contributed to the mission’s success.

“Our coordination with the RCC has become streamlined in a way that makes these missions routine and effective,” said Jorgensen. “The beauty of the InReach device is it allows us to pinpoint individuals and their exact location with little effort and allows us to respond quickly.”

 

 

Related Articles
Alaska Army National Guard Spc. Jamal Murphy, left, from Kotlik, and Spc. Luke Barnes, from Palmer, both infantrymen with Bison Company, 1st Battalion, 297th Infantry Regiment, prepare to ground their gear after completing a 5-kilometer snowshoe ruck march near the Alaska Army National Guard Readiness Center in Bethel Feb. 3, 2024.
Alaska Army Guard Conducts Cold-Weather Readiness Training
By Balinda O’Neal, | Feb. 7, 2024
BETHEL, Alaska - Bison Company, 1st Battalion, 297th Infantry Regiment, demonstrated readiness and resilience during cold weather training in Bethel Feb. 2-4.This training marked a significant reunion for the Alaska Army...

Soldiers representing the Army National Guard evacuate a simulated casualty during the 2023 U.S. Army Best Squad Competition at Fort Stewart, Georgia, Oct. 2, 2023. Twelve squads from throughout the Army competed to be named the Army’s Best Squad, and for individual Soldiers to earn the title Soldier or Noncommissioned Officer of the Year.
Army Guard Squad Competes in Army Best Squad Competition
By Sgt. 1st Class Jon Soucy, | Oct. 13, 2023
ARLINGTON, Va. – Under the oppressive Georgia heat and humidity, 12 squads from throughout the Army — including a squad representing the Army National Guard — battled it out at Fort Stewart Sept. 29-Oct. 6 in the 2023 U.S...

Alaska Army National Guard State Command Sergeant Major John Phlegar and Brig. Gen. James Palembas, commander, Alaska Army National Guard and assistant adjutant general, visit Soldiers of the 297th Regional Support Group participating in Pershing Strike 23 and Mobilization Exercise Level II at Fort Riley, Kansas, July 23, 2023.
Alaska National Guard Soldiers Test Readiness in Exercise
By Staff Sgt. Katie Mazos-Vega, | July 27, 2023
FORT RILEY, Kan. - More than 40 Alaska Army National Guard Soldiers from the 297th Regional Support Group are participating in Pershing Strike 23 and its associated Mobilization Exercise Level II July 7-Aug. 4.In the event of...