Friday, March 29, marked 46 years since the United States pulled its troops out of the Vietnam War. Out of the 540,000 U.S. troops there were 58,000 U.S. casualties. Nearly 900 of those were South Carolinians.

Patriots Point hosted a ceremony to dedicate a CH-46 helicopter in memory of two men who were killed in a crash during the evacuation of Saigon. The pilot and co-pilot of aircraft YT-14, Capt. William C. Nystul and 1st Lt. Michael Shea, were attempting to land on the USS Hancock on April 29, 1975, when their helicopter crashed into the Pacific Ocean during Operation Frequent Wind. The incident was the last Marine helicopter crash of the war.  The aircraft’s crew chief and gunner both survived.

The Vietnam War was the longest in U.S. history prior to the War on Terror, lasting nearly 20 years from 1955-75.