January 23, 2020 – Our deepest condolences are with the family and friends of our fallen heroes.

Yesterday we lost three members of our Coulson Aviation Family in Australia onboard one of our C-130 aircraft.

Captain Ian H. McBeth born November 24, 1975


Ian lived in Great Falls, MT and is survived by his wife Bowdie and three children Abigail, Calvin, and Ella. Also, by his parents Willian and Anneliese and his siblings Rick Fernandez, Eleanor McBeth, and Aislinn McBeth.

Ian’s love for his wife and children was evident for anyone who spent time around him. Ian was a highly qualified and respected C-130 pilot with many years fighting fire, both in the military and with Coulson Aviation.

Ian served with the Wyoming Air National Guard and was still a member of the Montana Air National Guard. He has spent his entire career flying C-130’s and was a qualified Instructor and Evaluator pilot. Ian earned his Initial Attack qualification for Coulson in 2018.

First Officer Paul Clyde Hudson born July 21, 1977


Paul lived in Buckeye, AZ and is survived by his wife Noreen. Paul graduated from the Naval Academy in 1999 and spent the next twenty years serving in the United States Marine Corp in a number of positions including C-130 pilot Paul retired as a Lt. Colonel and received many decorations during his career.

He earned Masters in both Business Administration and Information Technology Management from the Naval Postgraduate School.

Flight Engineer Rick A. DeMorgan Jr. born October 13, 1976


Rick lived in Navarre, FL. and is survived by his two children Lucas and Logan, his parents Rick Sr, Linda, and his sister Virginia. Rick served in the United States Air Force with eighteen years as a Flight Engineer on the C-130.

Rick had over 4,000 hours as a Flight Engineer with nearly 2,000 hours in a combat environment. Ricks passion was always flying and his children.

At Coulson Aviation, we have the incredible job of fighting fires around the world and we take pride in this responsibility. Right now, our hearts are with the crew’s family and friends and our Coulson Family suffering in the loss of these three remarkable and well-respected crew-members.

We as a company are committed to supporting the families of our fallen heroes through this tragedy. Our crews in Australia are fully supported by the RFS with their critical incident support personnel. Our crews on the other aircraft will be returning to work in the very near future as they are dedicated to the job we are required to do. We must continue to work with emergency services to protect local communities.

The aviation industry and emergency service sector is a small community both in Australia and around the world. This will be deeply felt by all. We honor the amazing crews who do incredible things in dangerous circumstances supported by world-class operations. We are incredibly moved by the outpouring and support from those in Australia and around the world.

Thank you for recognizing the work that our crews do and for expressing your condolences and grief for the families of our fallen heroes.


The Coulson Family