Major Sankalp Yadav (Sena Medal) was a Helicopter pilot in the Indian Army Aviation. A graduate of the National Defence Academy (NDA – Pune) & Indian Military Academy (IMA – Dehradun), he was initially commissioned in the Artillery regiment but later joined the Indian Army Aviation & was posted in Srinagar (Jammu & Kashmir).
I clearly remember the date (11-March-2022) & series of incidences happened on that day. It was around 12 in the afternoon. I was scrolling a news app and came across a news that a helicopter has crashed in Gurez (J&K). From that news I got to know that in that accident 1 pilot has lost his life while another is critical. I immediately called up Sankalp on his mobile number, but it was not reachable. This made me a bit worried. After some time, I received a call from an unknown number (from his aviation unit – Srinagar). They were checking some details from me. Although they did not disclose anything to me, but I had realised that things are not well as this was the first time, I ever got a call from his unit. After some time, I got the call from the Commanding Officer (CO) of his unit & finally the tragic news (which we never ever wanted to hear) was told to us.
This was his last helicopter sortie which he did on 11-March-2022 as he was recommended/selected for the training of ALH (advance light helicopter). His training was scheduled to begin from 14-March-2022.
We had planned to marry Sankalp in late 2022 or in early 2023. Coincidentally, it was the same day, when papa & mummy had planned to visit the local market, related to some preparation of Sankalp’s marriage. They were in the market (finalizing some order related to his marriage) when the news was shared with them. And after that, life has almost taken a U-turn as now the things are not the same, which used to be earlier.
Sankalp always had a passion for flying. He always wanted to become a pilot (either in the Indian Air force or a commercial pilot) but that couldn’t happen. Later he got an opportunity to join the Indian Army Aviation & he didn’t leave any chance to miss it. It was his passion towards flying that he stood 1st (overall topper) in basic army aviation course & 4th in the Advance Army aviation course. Sankalp’s close friend, Major Anuj Rajput was the overall topper in the advance army aviation course.
Major Anuj Rajput & Major Sankalp Yadav were batch mates since from the NDA & IMA days and they were also in the same advance army aviation course. While in the course, they used to study & train together. We lost Major Anuj Rajput in September 2021. This incident came as shock both for Sankalp (as he had lost his best friend) and for us as we had met Major Anuj Rajput in the passing out parade of Advance Army aviation course. Our mother was so heartbroken after losing Major Anuj Rajput, that she had even asked Sankalp to quit flying (aviation). There are many similarities between both Major Anuj Rajput & Major Sankalp Yadav. They are listed here: https://majorsankalpyadav.com/index.php/major-anuj-rajput-major-sankalp-yadav/
Sankalp was not only a dear brother to me, but he was also the best friend of mine. Though, in age, I am elder to him but many a times, I used to take a lot of suggestions & guidance from him, that was his maturity level. He was so close to me that I used to share each & everything with him. Be it related to my personal or professional life. He was a truly very gentle, caring and a very loving person.
Though we miss him each day & in every moment, but we miss him even more in some moments, when there is a family / friends get together.
We are trying our best that his name is always remembered. And as a small tribute to him, I have made this a website in his loving memory: https://majorsankalpyadav.com/