In addition to the national markings the marking of the
military intelligence air force was added to the nose
of the aircraft.
The military intelligence released the images
from the training on Black Hawk.
Croatia was mentioned the first time in November
2022 and they are not in Ukraine yet, even though
the talks resumed recently. However, Ukraine is
already flying Sea King and Black Hawk helicopter
which deliveries we mentioned in the previous
articles of this series. Black Hawk is an upgrade
of the older model UH-60A and was received
by the military intelligence. So far, a video was
published supposedly showing the special units’
training with this helicopter. Sea King’s history
is even more interesting. Two of them have been
delivered so far, the third aircraft was still in
Britain at the time of this article release. It has
been several year the helicopters were stuck of
charge from the Royal Navy so they needed to be
commissioned again. BBC journalists spoke with
two Ukrainian technicians who had trained for
maintenance of this type for seven months and
they were very satisfied with the it.
As per their account very little remains from the
original equipment as most of the components
were upgraded. Even more interesting, the BBC
report was made on board of one the Sea Kings
which is already in Ukraine. It appears that these
aircraft had served in 1982 during the Falklands
War, therefore its Ukrainian crew is younger than
their helicopter! In addition, more than 40 years
ago it played an important part in the conflict.
Flown by the 820th Squadron commander, Ralph
Wykes-Sneyd, it flew through the storm to bring
the British ground forces commander, General
Jeremy Moore to Port Stanley to accept the
Argentinian surrender on June 14, 1982. No other
aircraft could make it through the storm at that
time. “It was very interesting operation,” retired
Rear Amiral Ralph Wykes-Sneyd told BBC. “The
armistice has not been signed yet so on our flight
to Stanley we not only faced the bad weather but
also several rather hostile Argentinians.
This helicopter, currently in Ukraine, had been
flown several times by Prince Andrew who in the
Falklands War served as a naval pilot. Speaking
about esteemed war veteran the Ukrainian
pilots highly praise Sea King. They say it’s easily
controllable in the difficult conditions, has a lot
of space, good payload and operational economy.
These helicopters fly the soldiers and supplies
missions, but their most important role is for the
search and rescue missions. That, according to
its pilots, includes flying behind the enemy lines.
If the Ukrainian aircraft is hit and pilot has to
eject Sea King sometimes has to fly over the
territory which is not under Ukrainian control.
As stated before, not all kills could have been
documented and more often than not are
confirmed after a long period of time (if confirmed
at all). During this reporting period there were
only two confirmed losses on the Ukrainian side
and in neither case it was necessary to cross
the frontline. On March 1, near Bakhmut, Su-24
bomber form the 7 Brigade of the Tactical AF was
shot down. Its crew, Lt. Col. Viktor Volynets and
Lt. Igor Solomenikov lost their lives. The flight
of Su-27 fighter, bort number “blue 30”, which
took off on March 27 at 10:20 pm from Myrghorod
in Poltave region, ended tragically. The pilot ws
Major Denys Kyrylyuk credited with 80 combat
missions in the defense of the motherland from
the Russian invasion. On March 28, at 12:45 am,
after intercepting Shahed-136 Iranian-made
drones he crashed at Tovkachivka village in
Tchernighyv region and was killed.
Images from the BBS documentary on Sea King helicopter deployment in Ukraine.