The U.S. Coast Guard has donated a pre-owned Sikorsky HH-52A Seaguard helicopter that is set to be added to the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. The Museum’s first Coast Guard helicopter, the Seaguard, #1426, is scheduled go on display at the museum on April 14th, 2016, to coincide with Coast Guard aviation’s 100th anniversary.
1426 was recovered from the North Valley Occupational Center’s aviation facility in the Van Nuys area of Los Angeles. She had been there since 1989, being used as a static trainer for helicopter mechanics, meaning everything on her was loose or had been taken apart at least 100 times.
Their was a search for parts to make 1426 whole again.
Used for years by Air Station Houston, #1426 in 1979 rescued 22 survivors from the burning tanker Burmah Agate and freighter Mimosa after the two vessels collided near Galveston, Texas.
Basically a scaled down SH-3 Sea King without the ordnance capability, the HH-52 was used extensively by the Coast Guard for SAR and LE duties throughout the 1960s and 70s, being replaced by the HH-65 Dolphin in the 1980s.
There are some two dozen remaining on display, but this is the first one in the Smithsonian.