Defence has announced the preferred recipients of six ex-Army Bell UH-1H Iroquois helicopters that had been offered to historical organisations interested in displaying the Vietnam-era icons.
The recipients are:
• Australian Flying Corps RAAF Association Western Australia Division;
• Vietnam Veterans Associations of Australia Mitchell Sub-branch Victoria;
• Caboolture Warplane and Flight Heritage Museum Queensland;
• Port Pirie RSL Sub-branch South Australia;
• Merredin Military Museum Western Australia; and
• Scottsdale RSL Sub-branch Tasmania.
The last of the Army’s Iroquois were retired in 2007 after more than four decades in RAAF and Army service. Defence has said that organisations interested in displaying the helicopters would have to cover roughly $10,000 in costs associated with ‘de-militarising’ the aircraft.
“The Iroquois helicopters served in the Australian Defence Force for nearly half a century,” Minister for Defence Materiel Jason Clare said in a statement. “Today’s announcement means they will be preserved to ensure their contribution to our military heritage is not forgotten.”