Raven-11  

"A Place Called Shemya" 
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The image above is a video capture taken from an 8mm home movie titled "A Place Called Shemya" by Capt. Larry Wendfelt, Maj. Alan R. "Lurch" Hansen and Capt. Robert L. "Viper" Brown. This is the last known image ever recorded of Rivet Amber as she departs Shemya in 1969. It was shot about two weeks before she vanished over the Bering Sea on 5 June 1969 with 19 souls aboard. The entire movie is linked below on YouTube (14 Min. No Sound).




A Place Called Shemya
 
Dedicated To Rivet Amber Crewmembers 
Lost at Sea on 5 June 1969









The Lord's Prayer
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. 
Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 
Give us this day our daily bread. 
Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. 
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. 
AMEN



Ltc. Charles B. Michaud 
Aircraft Commander 
24th SRS 

Maj. Peter S. Carpenter 
Co-Pilot 
24th SRS 

Maj. Richard N. Martel 
Navigator 
24th SRS 

Capt. Michael E. Mills 
Navigator 
24th SRS 

Maj. Horace G. Beasley 
Raven 
24th SRS 

Maj. Rudolph J. Meissner 
Raven 
24th SRS 

Capt. James F. Ray 
Raven 
24th SRS


MSgt. Herbert C. Gregory 
Inflight Maint. Tech. 
55th A&EMS 

TSgt. Donald F. Wonders 
Inflight Maint. Tech. 
55th A&EMS 

TSgt. Lester J. Schatz 
Inflight Maint. Tech. 
55th A&EMS 

SSgt. Robert W. Fox 
Inflight Maint. Tech. 
55th A&EMS 

TSgt. Hervey Hebert 
Acft. Maint. 
55th OMS 

TSgt. Charles F. Dreher 
Acft. Maint. 
55th OMS


TSgt. Eugene L. Benevides 
USAFSS 

SSgt. Roy L. Lindsey 
USAFSS 

SSgt. Richard J. Steen Jr. 
USAFSS 

Sgt. Douglas Arcano 
USAFSS 

Sgt. Sherman E. Consolver Jr. 
USAFSS 

Sgt. Lucian A. Rominiecki 
USAFSS

TAPS






On 21 June 1969, the Fairbanks Daily News-Minor 
published a "Letter To The Editor" that reads as follows:


Dear Editor, 
"On the recent disappearance of the RC 135 plane, one might read from the news prints and wonder out of curiosity who they were or what kind of people they were. Maybe I can answer both of these questions. 

When I started working on the military bases years ago, I tried not to get deeply involved with military families, because they would be stationed here one day and rotate the next. But in spite of yourself you do become involved with their troubles and triumphs, ups and downs, sports, politics and whatever and their kids look to you from time to time for advice. It's the kind of involvement that makes you feel good to be part of their lives, so if the good Lord called his children home, He called nineteen of the greatest guys I've known. Nineteen men doing their "thing" to help keep this the greatest nation on earth. 

So if anyone should wonder who they were or what kind of people they were, well, they were the greatest, they were my friends, and I knew them well." 

Sincerely, 
Jay Spearman (Their Barber)
 




It's hard to believe that forty four years have now passed since the loss of Rivet Amber and her crew. In 1999 a young lady by the name of Jenny Wonders was searching the internet in hopes of finding information regarding the loss of her father, TSgt. Donald F. Wonders. In her search she found my name and e-mail address from a guestbook entry where I mentioned Rivet Amber. Up until that time she had very little information and no closure. Jenny's dedicated search for information about her father and Rivet Amber is what inspired me to create this website. I therefore dedicate my Rivet Amber pages to her and all those who were affected by the loss of Rivet Amber. Please feel free to contact me at any time via the email address shown below. I will do all I can to help answer your questions and provide information. You are in my prayers and may God bless you all. 

Sincerely, 
King Hawes 
KingdonAviation@gmail.com





~ The Brotherhood ~ 
"I now know why men who have been to war yearn to reunite. 
Not to tell stories or look at old pictures. Not to laugh or weep. 
Comrades gather because they long to be with the men who once acted at their best; 
men who suffered and sacrificed, who were stripped of their humanity. 
I did not pick these men. They were delivered by fate and the military. 
But I know them in a way I know no other men. I have never given anyone such trust. 
They were willing to guard something more precious than my life. 
They would have carried my reputation, the memory of me. 
It was part of the bargain we all made, the reason we were so willing to die for one another. 
As long as I have my memory, I will think of them all, every day. 
I am sure that when I leave this world, my last thought will be of 
my family and my comrades.… Such good men." 
~ Author unknown ~








After search and rescue efforts failed to find any Rivet Amber survivors or aircraft remains, Capt. Duncan "Dunc" Wilmore (Rivet Amber Raven) started the ball rolling on renaming Ptarmigan Hall (6th SW HQ, Eielson AFB) in honor of those lost on 5 June 1969. Ptarmigan Hall is now "Amber Hall". Capt. Wilmore is also responsible for the commemorative plaque located inside the main entranceway to Amber Hall.

W. Sargent
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The loss of Rivet Ball and Rivet Amber with 19 souls onboard in 1969 was devastating for all concerned. It was also a severe setback to our intelligence network and its ability to monitor the Soviet missile threat. The need for a replacement aircraft was of the highest priority. The Air Force and it's
Big Safari program worked 24/7 on two new RC-135s named Cobra Ball I (#61-2663) and Cobra Ball II (#61-2664). While Cobra Ball was under construction, the Army (SAD-I) and Navy (VQ-I) returned with their EA-3B Skywarrior ("The Whale") to help cover the gap until Cobra Ball was up and running. Read Bill Crane's story, "Tales of The Whale", on page #16 under "Related Stories" for details.





Heads Up


The next three pages (12-14) are titled "Passages In Time" and contain a lot of important information related to my story. It is a chronological list of key historical events covering more than 70 years that hopefully will add meaningful perspective to my story about Rivet Ball, Rivet Amber and Shemya. It also includes major events related to "Cobra Ball" (RC-135S) and "Rivet Dandy" (RC-135T) aircraft. Check back often as these pages are updated frequently. 







"The Rock"


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