The Bell H-13 Sioux first entered military service in 1948 as a three-seat observation and basic training helicopter that performed observation, reconnaissance, and MEDEVAC operations. Later used primarily for observation during the Vietnam War, the H-13 Sioux earned its reputation for dependability during the Korean War by scouting for enemy troop movements and rescuing the wounded from the field, carrying them swiftly to the nearest medical unit.
Though the Army introduced more sophisticated helicopters during the Vietnam War, in the early days the Army used its inventory of 861 H-13s as observers for the cavalry, infantry and air assault divisions. However, Vietnam’s hot climate and high altitude hampered the abilities of the H-13, and the OH-6 Cayuse later replaced the H-13 Sioux.
When used in the MEDEVAC role, protective stretcher pods were mounted on each skid. This feature helped the H-13 Sioux earn the nickname the “Angel of Mercy,” a nickname more popular with soldiers than its official moniker, “Sioux.” The helicopter could carry two injured over challenging terrain faster than any vehicle. Known to millions for its iconic role in the long-running television series M*A*S*H, the Bell H-13 Sioux was manufactured in 20 different configurations, and was flown by more than 40 different countries.
The obverse of the coin shows an H-13 in midflight patient evacuation, with profiles of the helicopter in the background. The reverse, depicting a scene from the Vietnam countryside and the Vietnam War Service Ribbon, is engravable, suitable for names, duty dates, or special remembrances.
Minted in solid bronze, using special deep-relief coining dies, and hand-finished with an antique patina for exceptional quality and detail, this coin displays the H-13 Sioux Helicopter in incredible detail.
Each coin measures 1 3/4 inch (44mm) in diameter.
This is a surplus NWTMint item. Packaging may vary.