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This is a list of notable fixed-wing military air combat losses since the end of the Vietnam War grouped by the year that the loss occurred. This list is intended for military aircraft lost due to enemy action during combat. For military aircraft lost due to accidental causes, refer to the list of notable incidents and accidents involving military aircraft. For civil aircraft losses, refer to list of notable accidents and incidents on commercial aircraft.

1983 (Multinational Force in Lebanon)Edit

  • December 4 – An A-6 Intruder (Bureau Number : 152915) and an A-7 Corsair II (Bureau Number : 157468) were shot down while attacking Syrian army's SAM batteries in Lebanon in the mountains east of Beirut by Syrian 9K31 Strela-1 or Strela 2 infrared homing missiles. The pilot of the A-6, Lieutenant Mark Lange[1] (flying from USS John F. Kennedy), was killed; his Bombardier/Navigator, Lieutenant Bobby Goodman, ejected and was captured by Syrian soldiers. Lt. Goodman was held for 30 days before his released was facilitated by Jesse Jackson. Lt. Lange's body was returned. From the A-7, Commander Edward Andrews managed to guide his failing Corsair over coastal waters before ejecting; he was rescued by a Lebanese fishing boat and safely returned to the U.S. Marines.

1986 (Operation El Dorado Canyon)Edit

  • April 15 – An F-111F Aardvark (Serial Number : 70-2389) was shot down by anti-aircraft artillery (AAA). The pilot (Captain Fernando L. Ribas-Dominicci) and Weapon Systems Officer (Captain Paul F. Lorence) were killed. Captain Ribas-Dominicci's body was returned to the US in 1989. Captain Lorence's body was never found. He is still listed as killed-in-action, body not recovered (KIA-BNR).

1991 (Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm)Edit

  • January 17 – An F/A-18C Hornet (Bureau Number : 163484) was shot down by an Iraqi Mig 25 in an air-to-air engagement. The pilot (Lieutenant Commander Michael Scott Speicher) of VFA-81 was killed but his body was not found until July 2009.
  • January 17 – An A-6E Intruder (Bureau Number : 161668) was shot down by a surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Lieutenant Robert Wetzel) and navigator/bombardier (Lieutenant Jeffrey Norton Zaun) were captured. They were released on March 3.
  • January 17 – An F-15E Strike Eagle (Serial Number : 88-1689) was shot down by anti-aircraft artillery (AAA). The pilot (Major Thomas F. Koritz) and WSO (Lieutenant Colonel Donnie R. Holland) were killed. Their bodies were recovered.
  • January 18 – An A-6E Intruder (Bureau Number : 152928) is shot down by anti-aircraft artillery two miles from the Iraqi shore after dropping mines on a waterway linking the Iraqi naval base of Umm Qasr with the Persian Gulf. The pilot (Lieutenant William Thomas Costen) and navigator/bombardier (Lieutenant Charlie Turner) are killed. Their bodies were recovered.[2]
  • January 18 – An OV-10 Bronco (Bureau Number : 155435) was shot down by surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Lieutenant Colonel Clifford M. Acree) and observer (Chief Warrant Officer Guy L. Hunter, Jr.) were captured. They were released on March 6.
  • January 18 – An F-4G Wild Weasel (Serial Number : 69-7571) crashes in the Saudi Arabian desert after attacking Iraqi air defenses. An investigation finds that a single enemy 23mm anti-aircraft artillery (AAA) round had punctured the fuel tank, causing fuel starvation. Both pilots eject over friendly territory and are rescued.[3]
  • January 19 – An F-15E Strike Eagle (Serial Number : 88-1692) was shot down by an SA-2E surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Colonel David W. Eberly) and WSO (Major Thomas E. Griffith) were captured. They were released on March 6 and March 3 respectively.
  • January 19 – An F-16C Fighting Falcon (Serial Number : 87-0228) was shot down by a SA-6 surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Captain Harry 'Mike' Roberts) was captured. He was released on March 6.
  • January 19 – An F-16C Fighting Falcon (Serial Number : 87-0257) is shot down by a SA-3 surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Major Jeffrey Scott Tice) is captured. He was released on March 6.
  • January 21 – An F-14A+ Tomcat (Bureau Number : 161430) was shot down by an SA-2 surface-to-air missile while on an escort mission near Al Asad airbase in Iraq. The pilot (Lieutenant Devon Jones) was rescued by USAF Special Operations Forces but the RIO (Lieutenant Larry Slade) was captured. He remained a POW until his release on March 3.
  • January 28 – An AV-8B Harrier II (Bureau Number : 163518) was shot down by anti-aircraft artillery (AAA). The pilot (Captain Michael C. Berryman) was captured. He was released on March 6.
  • January 31 – An AC-130H Spectre (Serial Number : 69-6567) was shot down by a surface-to-air missile during the battle of Khafji. The entire crew of fourteen were killed. Their bodies were recovered.
  • February 2 – An A-6E Intruder (Bureau Number : 155632) was shot down by anti-aircraft artillery (AAA). The pilot (Lieutenant Commander Barry T. Cooke) and navigator/bombardier (Lieutenant Junior Grade Patrick K. Connor) were killed. Only LTJG Connor's body is recovered as LCDR Cooke's body was never found (officially listed as KIA-BNR).
  • February 2 – An A-10A Thunderbolt II (Serial Number : 80-0248) was shot down by a SA-16 surface-to-air missile. The pilot

(Captain Richard Dale Storr) was captured. He was released on March 6.

  • February 5 – An F/A-18C Hornet (Bureau Number : 163096) was shot down. The pilot (Lieutenant Robert Dwyer) was lost over the North Persian Gulf after a successful mission to Iraq. Lieutenant Robert Dwyer served in Carrier Air Wing 8 (CVW-8). His body was never recovered (officially listed as KIA-BNR).
  • February 9 – An AV-8B Harrier II (Bureau Number : 162081) was shot down by a surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Captain Russell A.C. Sanborn) was captured. He was released on March 6
  • February 15 – An A-10A Thunderbolt II (Serial Number : 78-0722) was shot down by a SA-13 surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Lt. James Sweet) was captured. He was released on March 6.
  • February 15 – An A-10A Thunderbolt II (Serial Number : 79-0130) was shot down by a SA-13 surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Captain Steven Phillis) was killed and his body was later recovered.
  • February 19 – An OA-10A Thunderbolt II (Serial Number : 76-0543) was shot down by a SA-9 surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Lieutenant Colonel Jeffery Fox ) was captured. He was later released on March 6.
  • February 23 – An AV-8B Harrier II (Bureau Number : 161573) was shot down by a surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Captain James N. Wilbourn) was killed and his body was later recovered.
  • February 25 – An OV-10 Bronco (Bureau Number : 155424) was shot down by surface-to-air missile. The pilot (Major Joseph Small III) was captured and observer (Captain David Spellacy) was killed. Major Small was released on March 6 and Captain Spellacy's body was recovered.
  • February 27 – An AV-8B Harrier II (Bureau Number : 162740) was shot down by anti-aircraft artillery (AAA). The pilot (Captain Reginald Underwood) was killed and his body was later recovered.
  • February 27 – An F-16C Fighting Falcon (Serial Number : 84-1390) was shot down by anti-aircraft artillery (AAA). The pilot (Captain William Andrews) was captured. He was released on March 6.

1995 (Operation Deny Flight)Edit

  • June 2 – An F-16C Fighting Falcon (Serial Number : 89-2032) was shot down by a Serb 2K12 Kub SAM (NATO reporting name: SA-6 'Gainful') while on patrol over Bosnia. Its pilot (Captain Scott O'Grady) ejected and was later rescued by a USMC CH-53 Sea Stallion helicopter on 8 June.

1999 (Operation Allied Force)Edit

  • May 1 – An F-16C Fighting Falcon (Serial Number : 88-0550) was shot down by a Yugoslav SA-3 SAM. The aircraft crashes near Šabac, in a rural area of Serbia; the pilot (Lieutenant Colonel David Goldfein) survived and was subsequently rescued.

2001– (Operation Enduring Freedom/ISAF)Edit

2003–2011 (Operation Iraqi Freedom/New Dawn)Edit

  • April 7, 2003 - An F-15E (Serial Number 88-1694/SJ) of 4th FW/335th FS crashed on a combat bombing mission near Tikrit, Iraq. Both the pilot and Weapon Systems Officer (WSO) were killed.
  • April 8, 2003 - An A-10A (Serial Number 78-0691) of 124th FW/190th FS was shot down by enemy fire, probably by an Iraqi Roland SAM; pilot survived and was recovered by friendly forces.
  • List of aviation shootdowns and accidents during the Iraq War

ReferencesEdit

  1. At the U.S. Naval Academy, in Alumni Hall, a music room was named for Lt. Lange, Class of 1979.
  2. Pokrant, Marvin (1999). Desert Storm at Sea: What the Navy Really Did. Greenwood Publishing Group, p. 20. ISBN 0313310246
  3. 2951 Combat Logistics Support Squadron – Gulf War Battle Damage

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