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A Story about Hiller CH-112 10267

by LCol John Dicker.

            10267 was number seven of its type to enter service in the Canadian Military in 1961. My first flight in a helicopter took place in 267 on 22 Apr 63 while undergoing basic helicopter flying training on Course No. 56 at the Basic Helicopter Training Unit (BHTU), CJATC, Rivers Camp, Manitoba. After a grand total of 10 hours and 50 minutes of dual instruction, I flew solo for the first time in a helicopter, again in 267 on 29 Apr 63. The flight lasted 40 minutes.

267 remained in Canadian Military service until withdrawn from use 14 Jul 72, being struck off strength 31 Mar 73. It had been re-numbered as 112267 by that time as a result of a new numbering system for aircraft brought in by Canadian Forces circa 1970. 267 was then purchased by Evergreen Ventures Inc of McMinnville Oregon and registered as N28874 from 16 May 73.

In an attempt to determine 267's current day (Oct 08) status, and possibly obtain a photograph of it in Evergreen colours, I contacted Evergreen Helicopters Inc in McMinnville Oregon, by email. I received a very courteous email reply 28 Oct 08 from Mike Nelson, Costing and Contracts Administrator at Evergreen Helicopters. In that email he stated: "I went and did some digging for you. The aircraft is still registered to Evergreen. As you might imagine it is no longer in service, and hasn't been for some 25-30 years. We do have several Hillers that have been restored and placed within our museum among many other jewels of aviation history alongside the Spruce Goose. However, your particular aircraft is to my knowledge not among those few still remaining. Your aircraft is most likely in several pieces along with dozens of other Hillers that I found within Evergreen storage facilities". Sadly, based on Mike's plausible comments, it is very highly improbable that anyone will ever set eyes on an intact 267 ever again. At least now I know the ultimate fate of the helicopter that featured significantly in my initial helicopter-flying days.

The picture below taken at Rivers, Manitoba circa 1963 shows Hiller CH-112E 10265 which was identical in all respects to 10267.

The picture below is representative of what 267 would have looked like today had it been restored and preserved by Evergreen, and then placed in their beautiful museum in McMinnville. The aircraft in the picture, however, was not a former Canadian Military helicopter; rather, it is a Hiller UH-12E that Evergreen purchased from another source (US Army?, new?), flew until retired, restored and then placed in the museum for all to see. It is a magnificent specimen and basically identical in all respects (except the paint scheme) to "old" 267.