Recent Updates to List of USAF Serial Numbers

Last revised September 6, 2020

68-10357		HH-53C. Was never MH-53E, which is a USMC bird
Ca.1969: TOS USAF. Assigned to 40th Aerospace Rescue and Recovery Squadron, Udorn Royal Thai Air Force Base.
11/21/70: Was Apple 1 and carried the command element during Operation Ivory Coast, the mission to rescue American prisoners of war from the Son Tay North Vietnamese prison camp.
7/21/71: Base of operations changed to Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai AFB.
6/2/72: Rescued Captain Roger Locher.
6/27/72: Rescued Captain Lynn Aikman.
Note: In the 18 month period from Sontay to June 27, this helicopter played a role in the award of three Air Force crosses not to mention several Silver Stars.
By 1975 to after 1978: 33rd Aerospace Rescue and Recovery Squadron, Kadena Air Base, Okinawa
Ca. 1980: Converted to MH-53J.
By 10/86: 41st Aerospace Rescue and Recovery Squadron, McClellan AFB, CA.
By 1990: 20th Special Operations Squadron, 1st Special Operations Wing, Hurlburt Field, FL.
8/90-2/91: Flew combat missions during Operation Desert Storm.
By 2001: Converted MH-53M.
9/01: Flew search and rescue support missions after the attack on 11 September 2001
2003: Flew combat missions during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
3/28/08: Flew final mission and last flight supporting special operations forces in Iraq. The mission involved an assault against an enemy position resulting in the capture of nine enemy combatants.
4/08: Transported by C-17A from Iraq to the National Museum of the USAF.


1. Glenn Chatfield