Friday, March 30, 2018

Helicopter strikes vehicle; thousands lost!

For several years now, we have been towing Helicopter Charlie to the "LOST in 50's" old time car show in downtown Sandpoint. We love our old 1957 H-34 helicopter and plan to keep using it to gather donations for our basic cause of helping veterans in need, and attracting new members.  This past May was no exception, only this time we had a little mis-hap.

When our tow driver was making a turn to position the old H-34 into position, he swung the turn a little too wide, causing the tail of the helicopter to swing around and  scrape along the side of one of the show cars ... a candy apple red 1971 Chevy El Camino SS! It was a beautiful car ... until then.

I was walking the tail just to avoid such a problem. I could see that the tail was going to hit the Chevy, and I yelled loudly for the driver to stop. He did not hear me.

We have since bought a pair of walkie-talkies to prevent such future accidents.

Here is the broken tail handling handle of the helicopter, showing 
where it finally  stopped scraping along the side of the auto.

This shows where we broke off the side view mirror. 
Amazingly enough, the driver's window was not broken.

Close up shots of the damage to the front of the door area.
The windshield wqs broken in two places.
The descending part of the vinyl roof was ruined, 
necessitating an complete new vinyl top.

All the dirt came from inside the tail of the old machine, 
 where it accumulated as it sat in the desert near 
Tucson, AZ for decades.

I truly expected the owner of the Chevy to look me up and poke me in the eye. 
He did not. He was very philosophical about the whole thing. 
Love those mellow Canadians.

Front side panel where the tail first impacted.

At the end of the car show, the owner of the Chevy got a trophy. 
The Hardship trophy goes to the person who had the most trouble 
getting their car to and into the car show. 

What could be more trouble than getting hit by a helicopter?

Damage to the left front quarter panel.

A few months later, the chicken have come home to roost, so to speak. The total bill for this event was just over $6,000 Canadian. Too bad we didn't settle it sooner when the Canadian dollar was weaker. 6k Canadian is going to be about $5,000 US.

Our tow meister requested that this not be put on his auto insurance. I could only agree. So I have paid this out of pocket, and am now asking H-34 Charlie fans to contribute to the cause and make a small donation.
Please send a few bucks to:

Vietnam Veterans of America

Chapter  890

attn: H-34 Charlie fund

P O Box 2014
ID 83864

Be sure to write "for H-34 Charlie" on the check.
All donations are tax deductible under our 501 3 C (or whatever that number is).
Your help will be greatly appreciated.

Should we gather more than the required amount, any balance will go to help veterans in need.

Thank you for your continued support.

1 comment:

  1. Good thing that your heart problems were taken care of before this happened.
    I'll pledge $100 after my tax appointment today.