Timeline of the 1993 Battle of Mogadishu
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The 1993 Battle of Mogadishu, more commonly known as Black Hawk Down, was detailed by the U.S. Army and lasted from October 3 to October 4 in 1993.
October 3, 1993
13:50 – Task Force Ranger analysts receive intelligence of Salad's location.
15:32 – Official force launch, consisting of 19 vehicles, twelve aircraft, and 160 men.
15:42 – Official assault begins. 1st SFOD-D soldiers hit the target house. Four Ranger chalks fast-rope in. One Ranger, Private First Class Todd Blackburn, misses the rope and falls 70 feet to the street.
15:47 – Large crowds of Somalians begin converging on the target area.
16:00 – Groups of armed Somalians begin converging on the target area from all over Mogadishu.
16:02 – Raid targets captured: Assault force reports both clan leaders and about 210 others in custody. As the force prepares to pull out, three vehicles are detached to rush the wounded Private Blackburn back to the base. SGT Dominick Pilla is killed as these vehicles return to base, becoming the first American fatality.
16:15 – The convoy is delayed and does not move out due to confusion about who is signaling whom. It turns out Delta was waiting for the convoy to signal them while the convoy was waiting for Delta to signal them. Prisoners are eventually loaded after the Delta teams move the prisoners to the trucks.
16:20 – First helicopter crash: Black Hawk Super 6-1 is hit by a rocket-propelled grenade and crashes five blocks northeast[verification needed] of the target building. Delta Force snipers SSG Daniel Busch and SGT Jim Smith survive the crash and begin to defend the crash site.
16:22 – Crowds of armed Somalians start racing towards the Super 61 crash site.
16:26 – A Humvee convoy starts moving. When the prisoners are loaded up, the convoy and ground forces all begin moving towards the crashed helicopter. Black Hawk Super 64, piloted by Michael Durant, takes the place of Black Hawk Super 6-1 in orbit over the city.
16:28 – Search and rescue of Black Hawk Super 6-1: search and rescue team ropes in to assist the crew of the crashed helicopter. Both pilot and co-pilot are dead.
16:35 – Convoy makes a wrong turn and gets lost among the city streets, sustaining heavy casualties by Somalian snipers and armed militia.
16:40 – Second helicopter crash (Super 6-4): Mike Durant's Black Hawk, Super 64, is hit by another Somali rocket propelled grenade, and crashes about a mile southwest[verification needed] of the target building. Hostile crowds of Somalians begin moving toward it as well.
16:54 – HMMWV convoy abandons Black Hawk Super 6-1 search. The Lost Convoy, with more than half of its force either wounded or dead, abandons its search for the first downed Black Hawk and begins fighting its way back to the base.
17:03 – Quick Reaction Force convoy (a smaller, emergency convoy) is dispatched from Command and Control in an attempt to rescue the men stranded at Durant's crash site. It encounters immediate obstacles.
17:34 – QRF and the Lost Convoy decide to return to base. Both convoys, having sustained heavy casualties, link up and abandon the efforts to break through to Durant. The remainder of the ground force of Rangers and commandos is converging around the first crash site, sustaining many casualties. Ranger Corporal Jamie Smith is among those shot.
17:40 – Snipers Shughart and Gordon are killed. Somali crowds overrun Durant's crash site, killing Shughart, Gordon, and every member of the crew, except Durant, who is carried off by militia through the city.
17:45 – Both convoys return to the base. Ninety-nine men remain trapped and surrounded in the city around the first downed Black Hawk. Corporal Smith is bleeding heavily, medic requests immediate evacuation.
19:08 – Black Hawk Super 66 makes a daring re-supply run, dropping water, ammunition and medical supplies to the trapped force. It is badly damaged, cannot land to evacuate Corporal Smith, and limps back to base.
20:27 – Ranger Corporal Jamie Smith dies.
21:00 – Joint Task Force Command requests assistance from other commands. The Rescue Convoy is formed of two companies of 10th Mt. Division troops along with the remainder of Task Force Ranger, Pakistani tanks and Malaysian armored vehicles, forms at Mogadishu's New Port, and begins planning the rescue.
23:23 – The rescue convoy moves out, but as it approaches the crash site there is a large explosion in the city which severely damages the convoy and makes the rescue almost impossible. However, a stockpile of rocket-propelled grenades in the city allows them to be used to great effect. A large proportion of the population is affected by power outages due to the Americans' destroying electrical substations in Mogadishu.
October 4, 1993
At Midnight 00:00 (24:00), the Rangers are still trapped inside Mogadishu without essential equipment, such as night vision devices.
01:55 — Rescue convoy reaches the trapped Ranger force. A second half of the convoy reaches the site of Durant's downed Black Hawk. Durant and his crew are missing.
03:00 — Forces are still struggling to remove the pinned body of Clifton "Elvis" Wolcott, pilot of downed Super Six One.
05:30 — Rangers start moving from the city to the Pakistani Stadium, on foot. Wolcott's body is finally recovered. Vehicles roll out of the city. Elements of the Rangers are left to run to a rendez-vous point on National Street, covering the vehicles whilst enduring gunfire during the exfiltration. The road they take is known as the Mogadishu Mile.
06:30 — The force returns to the Pakistani Stadium. 13 Americans are confirmed dead or mortally wounded, 73 injured, and 6 missing in action (5 are later confirmed dead, raising the death toll to 18, and 1 taken prisoner).