Jeffrey White ’68

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Jeffrey White
White medals
Jeffrey White

Jeffrey was the only member of the Class of ’68 lost in Vietnam.  The second Bruin to be listed as a non-hostile fatality, the following information is known:

On 27 Sep 1970 the 237th Medical Detachment was tasked with flying a civilian medevac from Camp Evans to Quang Tri. The purpose of the flight was to transport a very badly burned Vietnamese child, accompanied by its mother, to the hospital at Quang Tri. The helicopter, UH-1H 69-15297, departed at about 2100 in very bad weather, intending to fly at very low altitude using its searchlight to maintain ground contact.

While enroute 297 suffered a failure of its attitude indicators and the pilot elected to try to climb above the weather. At about 2000 feet, the attitude gyros failed entirely, whereupon the crew attempted a descent. Both pilots were affected by vertigo and were able to maintain only marginal control of the aircraft. During the descent the airspeed indicator failed as well. Ground impact occurred in a near-vertical 500 feet/minute descent, with the aircraft rolling onto its side after impact. Although there was no fire, one crewman died in the crash and three persons were injured.

Upon notification of the situation by Quang Tri the 237th Med Det launched two search aircraft. One of them, UH-1H 69-15021, also crashed while trying to operate at very low altitude and in extremely adverse weather conditions.  In all, five men died

  • In UH-1H 69-15297:
    • SP4 David W. MacLurg, Kent, WA, medic
  • In UH-1H 69-15021:
    • WO Michael L. Bradley, Orange, CA, pilot
    • CWO Robert O. Hill, Churchville, PA, copilot
    • SP5 Kenneth C. Nokes, Vista, CA, medic
    • SP4 Jeffrey M. White, San Francisco, CA, crew chief

Personal Data
Home of Record:   San Francisco, CA

Date of Birth:         08/21/1949

Military Data
Service Branch:    Army of the United States

Grade at Loss:        E4

Rank:                      Specialist Four

MOS or Specialty: 67N20: UH-1 Helicopter Repairer

Length Service:     One year

Unit:                        237th Med Det, 67th Med Group, 44th Med BDE, USARV

Casualty Data
Start Tour:             01/11/1970

Incident Date:       09/27/1970

Casualty Date:       09/27/1970

Age at Loss:            21

Location:                Quang Tri Province, South Vietnam

Remains:                Body recovered

Casualty Type:      Non-hostile, died of other causes

Casualty Reason:  Helicopter – Crew

Casualty Detail:    Air loss or crash over land

On the Wall:             Panel 07W   Line 97