Mont Garbi Accident 1982

Djibouti, Africa, 1982. On February 3, the aircraft Nord 2501 Noratlas occupied by the 2nd Platoon of the 4th Company of the 2nd Foreign Parachute Regiment (2e REP), crashed into Mont Garbi (Mount Garbi) and exploded. All 36 men on board died, including 29 men from the French Foreign Legion. The 2e REP lost 27 men – an officer and 26 legionnaires. Nobody survived. The official explanation – bad weather and incorrect barometric setting of the aircraft’s altimeter.

The 4th Company of 2e REP deployed to Djibouti for the so-called Short Period Mission (Mission de Courte Durée, MCD), which commonly lasted 4-6 months at that time. The 2e REP had to fulfil its tasks in this African country as a French company team attached to the 13th Demi-Brigade of the Foreign Legion (13e DBLE) and formed its rotational infantry unit. The 13e DBLE was stationed in Djibouti during the 1962-2011 period.

Ironically, another tragic air accident killing legionnaires in Djibouti occurred six years earlier: 1976 Djibouti helicopter crash.

For the Foreign Legion, the Mont Garbi accident remains the most tragic day since the end of the Battle of Dien Bien Phu (1954) of the First Indochina War.

On February 12, 1982, a memorial ceremony to pay homage to killed 2e REO legionnaires took place at Camp Raffalli, the military base of 2e REP located near Calvi, Corsica.

Mont Garbi - accident - Legion - Djibouti - 2nd Platoon - 4th Company - 2 REP - 2e REP

 

Killed members of the 2nd Platoon, 4th Company, 2e REP:

  • Capitaine PHILIPPONNAT Eric
  • Sergent-chef STORAI Georges
  • Sergent DORE Patrick
  • Sergent POMIER Dominique
  • Sergent VOUTIER André
  • Caporal OEHLMANN Gustav
  • Caporal OLETTA Albin
  • Caporal PELTON Eddy
  • Caporal SIMONET Francois
  • Caporal BURGRAFF Adolph
  • Legionnaire BEAUTEMPS Marc
  • Legionnaire BETON Norbert
  • Legionnaire KERTY Gallien
  • Legionnaire ZASSER Raymond
  • Legionnaire BUZUT Muslum
  • Legionnaire DEPIERRE Paul
  • Legionnaire DEVAUX Robert
  • Legionnaire FALAUT Marc
  • Legionnaire GALVES Francisco
  • Legionnaire GORDON Luis
  • Legionnaire GUNES Yasar
  • Legionnaire LEON Lawrence
  • Legionnaire LIMA DA SILVA
  • Legionnaire LUANG Eric
  • Legionnaire SENDERS Jean
  • Legionnaire THIU-SAM Jerome
  • Legionnaire VELMAR Maurice

Killed members of the 13e DBLE:

  • Capitaine CHANSON Jacques
  • Caporal LAURIOL Guy

The rest of the killed men were the aircraft’s crewmembers and the French marine’s commandos.

 

 

Mont Garbi accident - Calvi  - 2 REP
February 12, 1982 – a pay homage ceremony at Camp Raffalli
Mont Garbi accident - funeral ceremony
A funeral ceremony at the cemetery of Calvi
Mont Garbi accident monument - commemoration ceremony
Mont Garbi monument in Djibouti – a commemoration ceremony is held every year to remember fallen comrades

Mont Garbi accident - the monument plaque

2e REP - snipers of the 2nd Platoon of the 4th Company in October 1981
The legionnaires-snipers from the 2nd Platoon, 4th Company, 2e REP while training in Corsica in late 1981, before moving to Djibouti. In three months, the whole platoon will be killed during the Mont Garbi accident

Information & images source:
Légion étrangère official website
– Képi blanc magazine

 

Related articles:
1932 Turenne rail accident
1976 Djibouti helicopter crash
2016 Avalanche accident in the Alps

 

The page was updated on: January 30, 2016

 

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