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Info Sheet - Frank Hamel

Died 25 August 2014.

Obituary: RE:

Frank Hamel, 67, a resident of Exeter, NH, died August 25, 2014 at the Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital in Bedford, MA. He was born on October 19, 1946 in Tillimook, Oregon to Mary (Wood) Hamel and the late N. Frank Hamel. Frank was raised and educated in Salisbury and was a graduate of Newburyport High School. Following his graduation Frank enlisted in the Army and served during the Vietnam War as a Helicopter Pilot. He flew on many missions during the war and received the Purple Heart and the Distinguished Flying Cross among many other medals. He was also stationed in Fort Worth Texas from 1966 to 1969 as a Helicopter Instructor.

He held several jobs over the years all with his flying background. Frank was employed in Alaska transporting supplies during the building of the Alaskan Pipeline, as well as being called on to fly helicopters during the filming of several movies, one of which was "Steel" in 1979. He finished his flying career with Minuteman Corporation in Ohio as a Charter Pilot retiring in 1980.

Frank is survived by his mother Mary (Wood) Hamel of Exeter, NH, brother Steven Hamel of Exeter, sister Lisa Hamel of San Diego, CA and nieces and nephews, Zoey, Stacey, Jaydin and Scott.

Family and friends may call on Friday August 29, 2014 from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Twomey-LeBlanc and Conte Funeral Home 193 High St. Newburyport, MA 01950. His Funeral Service will be held in the Funeral Home on Saturday August 30, at 10:00 a.m. followed by burial with military honors in the Veterans section of Old Hill Cemetery in Newburyport.

Memorial contributions may be made in Franks name to the American Cancer Society P.O. Box 22718 Oklahoma City, OK 73123-1718.

Michael Banks: I'd maintained a connection with Frank since flight school. Frank and I were in the same class at Wolters, WORWAC 66-7. We touched down VietNam in Pleiku, where our entire class of approximately 140 aviators proceeded to ship out to fly with the 1st Air Cav, except for 5 or 6 lucky "Yellow Hats" who were diverted to Cu Chi to fill aviator slots in A and B Company of the 25th Div Aviation. Frank and Gary Bassett and I moved onto the Centaur turf of D/3/4 Cav.

Frank became a gunship pilot after his orientation, and continued in that duty until he DEROSed in July of 67. He was a pretty fine marksman with rockets, probably rated "EXPERT" if there were any such ratings. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Purple Heart, maybe more than one, not sure

After his Centaur tour, Frank finished his 4 year military commitment as an instructor pilot at Fort Wolters TX. He later continued flying choppers as a civilian with several organizations in Alaska, and later worked commercial helicopter duties flying for a lift company in Ohio.