Monday, October 26, 2009

Army Chief Warrant Officer 4 Michael P. Montgomery

Remember Our Heroes

Army Chief Warrant Officer 4 Michael P. Montgomery, 36, of Savannah, Ga.

CWO4 Montgomery was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Regiment (Airborne), Hunter Army Airfield, Ga., died Oct. 26, 2009 of wounds suffered when the MH-47 helicopter he was aboard crashed in Darreh-ye Bum, Afghanistan. Also killed were Sgt. 1st Class David E. Metzger, Staff Sgt. Keith R. Bishop, Chief Warrant Officer Niall Lyons, Staff Sgt. Shawn H. McNabb, Sgt. Josue E. Hernandez Chavez and Sgt. Nickolas A. Mueller.

The Seattle Times --A Redmond native was among seven U.S. Army Special Operations Command soldiers killed in a helicopter crash Monday in western Afghanistan.

Chief Warrant Officer 4 Michael P. Montgomery, 36, was a pilot and electronic-warfare officer, according to the Department of Defense. The accident, with the regiment that's known as the Night Stalkers, still is under investigation, said the DOD.

Montgomery is survived by his mother, Mary Montgomery, of Redmond, and his wife and son, Anita and Riley Montgomery, of Savannah, Ga., said the department.

Family members could not be contacted.

Another Washington state native, Chief Warrant Officer 3 Niall D. Lyons, 40, who grew up in Spokane and was a pilot and tactical operations officer, also was killed in the crash.

The DOD said all the soldiers died as a result of injuries received when the MH-47 Chinook helicopter they were flying in crashed.

The department said Montgomery volunteered for the Army in October of 1991. He served four years in the National Guard and then was accepted into the Army Warrant Officer Program. He was a combat veteran with seven deployments, two in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and five in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Montgomery was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) in Savannah. He earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Aeronautical Science from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in 2002.

A news release from the DOD shows Montgomery received many awards over the years: the Air Medal, two Army Commendation Medals, the Army Achievement Medal, four Army Reserve Component Achievement Medals, two National Defense Service Medals, Afghanistan Campaign Medal-Campaign Star, Iraqi Campaign Medal-Campaign Star, Global War On Terrorism Service Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, NCO Professional Development Ribbon, the Army Service Ribbon, and Senior Aviator Badge.

On Oct. 22, the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment had another accident in which a Black Hawk helicopter crashed during a training mission off the coast of Virginia. One service member died, and eight were injured.

Col. Clayton Hutmacher, commander of the regiment, issued a statement on Friday about both crashes that said, in part:

"Every night, the uniquely skilled and highly trained Night Stalker aviators and crew members perform the most challenging and dangerous training and missions in support of our Special Operations brother. ...

"Both aircraft were flown by exceptionally qualified and professional crews. At this time it is unclear as to what caused the aircraft to crash and while it's important that we investigate and determine what caused these tragic events; our immediate and lasting concern is for the families and friends of these extraordinary men who served their country with distinction, made the ultimate sacrifice, and who lived by the motto: 'Night Stalkers Don't Quit.' "

Army Chief Warrant Officer 4 Michael P. Montgomery was killed in action on 10/26/09.

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