An incident occurred on this day in 1995: an American F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter jet, was shot down over Bosnia.
The movie “Behind Enemy Lines” is loosely based upon experiences of pilot Scott O’Grady.
He was forced to eject from the plane, but used his parachute, and landed among a Bosnian-Serb population. Scott was the only pilot.
This happened near Mrkonjić Grad in the Republika Srpska entity. His plane was shot down by the Serbs, who used a 2K12 Kub missile system.
O’Grady landed, and immediately smeared mud on his face. When Serbian troops came upon his parachute and ejection seet, he hid face-down.
The troops hit the ground with their rifles in his vicinity, but didn’t find him. Scott then spent six days hiding in the mountains, eating leaves, grass and insects.
The rescue mission was headed by Marines (two Sea Stallion helicopters and 51 soldiers). They took off from the USS Kearsarge aircraft carrier (in the Adriatic Sea).
They found O’Grady, but while the helicopters were returning to the USS Kearsarge, the Serbs used anti-aircraft missiles and small arms to attack them.
The helicopters returned safely to the carrier.