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Gary Blain

Billings becomes home to the first 2 civilian-owned Chinook helicopters

Billings becomes home to the first 2 civilian-owned Chinook helicopters

The nation’s first pair of civilian-owned Chinook helicopters landed south of Billings on Thursday afternoon — and, since they’re now owned by Billings Flying Service, it’s here they’ll stay until they’re refurbished and put back to work.

February 20, 2014 8:22 pm Video Photos

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Blain Christmas Eve tradition continues with helicopter flight over Billings

Blain Christmas Eve tradition continues with helicopter flight over Billings

In honor of his late nephew, AJ, Gary Blain will fly his Bell 210 helicopter on Christmas Eve from from 5 to 6:30 p.m., spreading holiday cheer in Lockwood, Billings and Laurel.

December 24, 2013 12:16 pm Photos

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Gary Blain

Gary Blain

Gary Blain, co-owner of Billings Flying Service, talks about flying Santa around Billings on Christmas Eve. The tradition has been carried out since 1981.

December 24, 2013 11:43 amLoading…
First hay drop for starving horses a success

First hay drop for starving horses a success

Billings Flying Service airlifted about 20 tons of hay, one round bale at a time, Thursday morning to hundreds of hungry horses on a ranch east of Billings along Highway 87E.

January 27, 2011 1:15 pm Photos

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Flames or famine: Fire contractors riding out recent lean years in Montana

Flames or famine: Fire contractors riding out recent lean years in Montana

When fire season sweeps across Montana, the Butlers keep an eye on the weather and scan the horizon for lightning. But above all, they never stray beyond cell phone range.

September 26, 2010 12:15 am Photos

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Vietnam pilot reunited with helicopter

Vietnam pilot reunited with helicopter

Forty years later, Vietnam veteran Roger Riley located the helicopter he was repeatedly shot down in in Billings. The helicopter is currently operated by Billings Flying Service.

July 05, 2010 12:30 amLoading…
California man makes trek to Billings to see and fly the helicopter he piloted during Vietnam War

California man makes trek to Billings to see and fly the helicopter he piloted during Vietnam War

The Laotian hilltop where hundreds of shattered and bleeding South Vietnamese troops had swarmed in a desperate huddle waiting for U.S. helicopters to rescue them March 19, 1971, was suddenly deserted and quiet.

July 05, 2010 12:15 am Photos

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Gary Blain

Gary Blain

Gary Blain, of Billings Flying Service, right, shares a laugh with Roger Riley at the company’s hangar south of Billings on Saturday. The men were preparing to do recurrent flight training in a helicopter owned by Blain.

July 05, 2010 12:00 amLoading…
Gary Blain

Gary Blain

Gary Blain, of Billings Flying Service, goes for a recurrent flight training mission with Roger Riley at the company's hangar south of Billings on Saturday.

July 05, 2010 12:00 amLoading…
Roger Riley

Roger Riley

Gary Blain, of Billings Flying Service, right, and Roger Riley lift off for a recurrent flight training mission at the company's hangar south of Billings on Saturday.

July 05, 2010 12:00 amLoading…
Robert Riley

Robert Riley

Gary Blain, of Billings Flying Service, left, shows Robert Riley, second from left and his brother Roger, right, as well as U.S. Congressman Denny Rehberg the Riley's Vietnam era helicopter. Roger and Robert Riley met with Blain at the company's hangar south of Billings on Saturday.

July 05, 2010 12:00 amLoading…
Gary Blain

Gary Blain

Gary Blain, of Billings Flying Service, listens to stories told by Roger Riley at the company's hangar south of Billings on Saturday. Riley is in Billings to see the helicopter he flew in Vietnam.

July 05, 2010 12:00 amLoading…
Denny Rehberg

Denny Rehberg

U.S. Congressman Denny Rehberg, left, Gary Blain, of Billings Flying Service, second from right and Montana Senator Roy Brown, right, talk with Roger Riley at the company's hangar south of Billings on Saturday. Riley is in Billings to see the helicopter he flew, and was shot down in, in Viet…

July 05, 2010 12:00 amLoading…
Gallery: Vietnam helicopter

Gallery: Vietnam helicopter

View photos of Roger Riley reunion with a chopper he was shot down in 1971

July 05, 2010 12:00 am Photos

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