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Previous Page: Since 1958, Sikorsky helicopters have been used for what is arguably the most high profile helicopter mission in the world.

of the United States and other heads of state. Known as Marine One when the President is on board, the VH-3 saw its first Presidential duty in 1962.

Left: Dr. Igor Sikorsky is shown being hoisted by the newly developed helicopter rescue hoist on August 14, 1944. Flying

the Sikorsky HNS-1 is Commander Frank Erickson, USCG. This picture was taken at the Coast Guard Air Station at Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn, N.Y. where a significant amount of early helicopter development took place, including design and testing of the rescue hoist.

Below: The last helicopter development project that Igor Sikorsky was personally involved in was that of the S-64 Flying Crane.

First flying in May of 1962, the S-64 was capable of lifting 25,000 pounds and is still in service today doing a variety of heavy lift missions.

Opposite: A United States Coast Guard HH-3F (S-61R) is shown during a rescue attempt of a disabled vessel. Many Sikorsky helicopters have reaffirmed Igor Sikorsky’s vision of the helicopter being a valuable life saving tool.

Opposite Inset: The old and the new, Igor Sikorsky’s first helicopter, the VS-300, is shown with a United States Coast Guard HH-60J Jayhawk. The Jayhawk is part of the extremely successful S-70 family which is used by all branches of the U.S. military and many foreign militaries.

Photos: Courtesy of Sikorsky Historical Archives

Marine One. Igor Sikorsky’s final proj- ect was the S-64 or Flying Crane. Starting as the S-60 in 1958, improve- ments resulted in the S-64 which first flew in 1962. The military version was known as the CH-54 Tarhe and it saw significant use in Vietnam.


the Flying Crane was not as commercial- ly successful as some other models, it did push the concept of a heavy lift helicop- ter forward and S-64s are still flying today in a variety of heli-logging, fire fighting and heavy lift applications. Igor Sikorsky passed away in his

sleep on October 26, 1972 at the age of 83. His office is today the same as it was when he left work on the day he died. It is viewable inside the Sikorsky Aircraft factory in Stratford, CT behind a glass partition. It has been kept intact as a memorial to the man who helped usher in a new era in aviation and whose vision and ideals made Sikorsky Aircraft one of the leaders in the helicopter industry. During his aviation careers, Igor Sikorsky accumulated an impressive list of accolades. According to the Sikorsky Historical Archives, he received over

eighty honors, awards and certificates between 1933 and 1971. Included in this list are nine honorary doctorates, six fellowships, the Silver Medal of the Royal Aeronautical Society, the Presidential Certificate of Merit from President Harry Truman, the Wright Trophy, the National Medal of Science from President Lyndon Johnson and the Daniel Guggenheim Medal. The American Helicopter Society twice rec- ognized Igor Sikorsky as a Honorary Fellow (1944 and 1960), awarded him the Grover F. Bell Award for fostering and encouraging research and experi- mentation in helicopter development and the first ever Dr. Alexander Klemin Award for notable achievement in advancement of rotary wing aeronautics. Today the American Helicopter Society annually presents the Igor I. Sikorsky International Trophy to the company that develops a helicopter establishing an official record during the preceding year. To commemorate the vision Igor Sikorsky had of the helicopter being a machine capable of saving human life, the Sikorsky Aircraft Company pres- ents the Winged S Rescue Award to aircrews that save a life using a Sikorsky helicopter.

Many people wrongfully acknowl- edge Igor Sikorsky as the inventor of the helicopter. This was a misunder- standing Sikorsky himself tried to cor- rect by pointing out he neither invent- ed the helicopter nor the single main

Sikorsky VH-3Ds (S-61s) are flown by Marine Helicopter Squadron One (HMX-1) to transport the President

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