Colorado Guard retires last of its ‘Huey’ helicopters
September 8, 2009
EAGLE, Colo. – The Colorado Army National Guard will formally retire the last of its Bell UH-1 “Huey” helicopters at its high-altitude training site near Vail.
The helicopters will perform a ceremonial fly-by at the High Altitude Army Training Site on Tuesday.
The UH-1s first flew in 1956 and were used heavily in the Vietnam War. The Army is phasing them out in favor of the faster, more powerful UH-60 Blackhawk.
The Colorado Guard has been flying Hueys since the 1970s and has five left. In Colorado, they’ve been used for rescues, humanitarian assistance and firefighting.
Huey crews conducted search-and-rescue missions during the 1976 Big Thompson Canyon flood, which killed 145 people and caused $41 million in damage.
They have also ferried hay to cattle during Colorado blizzards.