Bruce Crandall was honored with the first Helicopter Heroism Award of the Aviation/Space Writers Association for two daring nighttime landings under fire to rescue 12 badly wounded men during Operation MasherWhite Wing in January 1966. He served two tours of duty in Vietnam, commanding helicopters in 1965 in the Ia Drang Valley, which is the subject of the movie “We Were Soldiers,” where he is portrayed by Greg Kinnear. Crandall served as an aviation consultant during filming in 2001. In 1996 he was inducted into the Gathering of Eagles and is the only Army aviator to have received both honors. He retired in 1977 as a Lieutenant Colonel. He served as City Manager of Dunsmuir, California from 1977 to 1980, when he moved to Mesa, Arizona, where he served as the Manager of Public Works until his retirement in 1994. He was promoted to full Colonel on April 15, 2010 in recognition of his accomplishments.
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