October 3-4, 1993 Battle of Mogadishu timeline
That Afternoon on
October 3, 1993
14:49 — Two principal targets, Habr Gidr clan leaders, located at a residence in central Mogadishu, Somalia.
15:32 — Official force launch. The force launches: nineteen aircraft, twelve vehicles and 160 men.
15:42 — Official assault beginning. 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 Somalis begin converging on the target area.
15:58 — One of the vehicles, a five-ton truck, is hit and disabled by a rocket propelled grenade, several American soldiers are wounded.
16:00 — Groups of armed Somalis begin converging on the target area from all over Mogadishu.
16:02 — Targets acquired: assault force reports both clan leaders and about 21 others in custody. As the force prepares to pull out, three vehicles are detached to rush the wounded Private Blackburn back to the base.
16:15 — The convoy is delayed and does not move out due to a confusion in who is signalling who so the prisoners can be loaded and it turns out delta were waiting for the convoy to signal them while the convoy were waiting for delta to signal them. Loading of the prisoners eventually happens after the delta teams move the prisoners to the trucks.
16:20 — First helicopter crash: Black Hawk Super 61 is hit by a rocket propelled grenade and crashes five blocks northeast of the target building.
16:22 — Crowds of armed Somalis start racing toward the Super 61 crash site.
16:26 — HMMWV convoy starts moving. Prisoners loaded, the convoy and ground forces all begin moving toward the crashed helicopter. Black Hawk Super 64, piloted by Michael Durant, takes the place of Black Hawk Super 61 in orbit over the city.
16:28 — Search and rescue of Black Hawk Super 61: search and rescue team ropes in to assist the crew of the crashed helicopter. Both pilot and co-pilot are dead.
16:35 — Convoy gets lost: convoy makes a wrong turn and begins driving lost through city streets, sustaining heavy casualties by Somali snipers and armed militia.
16:40 — Second helicopter crash (Super 64): Mike Durant's Black Hawk, Super 64, is hit by another Somali rocket propelled grenade, and crashes about a mile southwest of the target building. Hostile crowds of Somalis begin moving toward it as well.
16:42 — Two Delta Force snipers, Sergeant First Class Randy Shughart and Master Sergeant Gary Gordon, are inserted by helicopter at their own request to help protect the injured Durant and his crew.
16:54 — HMMWV convoy abandons Black Hawk Super 61 search: the Lost Convoy, with more than half of its force 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 dispatched from Command and Control: a QRF (smaller, emergency convoy) is dispatched 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 effort to break through to Durant. The remainder of the ground force of Rangers and commandos are 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. 99 men remain trapped and surrounded in the city around the first downed Black Hawk. Corporal Smith 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, 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.
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 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).