Over There: Pilot films ‘Top Gear’ scenes
Jean Edwards email@example.com February 14, 2013 6:40AM
Nathanael Greene and co-pilot Paul McNeil flew with an American flag on the side of the helicopter during a combat mission that day. | Submitted photo
Updated: March 15, 2013 11:28AM
Army Warrant Officer Nathanael Greene of Joliet had the opportunity to pilot one of the Kiowa Helicopters filmed in the program “Top Gear” that aired Feb. 5 on the History Channel.
The filming was of scenes of the OH-58 Kiowa helicopter from the 159th Combat Aviation Brigade, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) attempting to trap stunt driver and “Top Gear” host Tanner Faust during a “cat-and-mouse” chase scenario in a secured Fort Campbell, Ky., training area.
The show crew staged other elements of the 101st to include all-terrain vehicles and soldiers from the 2nd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team STRIKE, during the week-long shoot.
Greene piloted seven hours doing the helicopter flight scenes. While filming of the show, tragedy struck and his buddy and co-pilot, Warrant Officer Kenneth Barker, was involved in a car accident and later died.
Greene’s military career first began with the U.S. Marines after the anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001. While in the Marines, he served in two deployment tours — the invasion of Iraq (2003) and the Battle of Fallujah (2004). He later transferred into the U.S. Army to become a Kiowa helicopter pilot, where he flew his helicopter while on a deployment in Afghanistan in 2011.
There is great military history in the Greene family tree. Dennis Greene, his dad, is a Vietnam Navy veteran who served aboard the destroyer USS Alan M. Sumner DD-692. He was stationed off the coast of North Vietnam in 1967, engaging coastal gun emplacements as well as supply vessels and truck convoys moving south to resupply North Vietnamese troops and the Viet Cong.
“We supplied off-shore fire support when our troops went into the DMZ for the first time,” Dennis said.
His grandfather served in the Army during World War II in Gen. George Patton’s 3rd Army from Normandy to Bastogne, across the Rhine into Germany until the war ended. Dennis’ great-grandfather was in the Union Army in the Civil War and was at the Second Battle of Bull Run and several lesser-known encounters. Henry Greene was a British soldier during the French and Indian War who fought at the Battle of Quebec on the Plains of Abraham in 1759.
If you have a loved one returning from Iraq or leaving for deployment or if you have a love story on how you met your sweetheart while serving, contact Jean Edwards at firstname.lastname@example.org or 815-773-7172.