This “H” model Iroquois helicopter (commonly known as the “Huey”) A2-771,was delivered to No 9 Squadron in Vietnam in July 1968.
It remained in service in Vietnam until the Squadron returned to Australia aboard HMAS Sydney which anchored off Caloundra on 19 December 1971.
That morning A2-771, as part of a two flight formation of 9 Squadron, totaling 16 aircraft, departed Maroochydore and ultimately landed at RAAF Amberley. A2-771 had arrived home.
From 1972 to 1989 the aircraft had a change of colour scheme, had modifications fitted and provided effective helicopter support to the civilian community during natural disaster events such as the floods in 1974 which inundated Ipswich, much of Southern and Western Queensland and Northern New South Wales.
In 1989 A2-771 was flown as an Army Aviation Iroquois helicopter until the decision was made to withdraw Iroquois helicopters from the ADF Order of Battle.
This aircraft has been returned to its original Vietnam era colour scheme and configuration and is now on permanent loan to the RAAF AAHC from the No.9 Squadron Association.
Below is an interview that was conducted with one of our volunteers Vic Smith who was a door gunner during the Vietnam War, and flew as part of the crew of A2-771.