Tragedy Strikes: Missing Marines Found Deceased After Helicopter Crash

The news came on Thursday that the five Marines who had gone missing while on a helicopter journey from Nevada to California have been discovered deceased.

The Marines were engaged in a training exercise, traveling in a CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter from Creech Air Force Base in Clark County, Nevada to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in San Diego, California. The helicopter’s last-known location was reported around 11:30 p.m. on Tuesday, and it was declared overdue at 1 a.m. on Wednesday, as per the Marine Corps.

The crashed helicopter was located in a rugged, mountainous area east of San Diego at approximately 9 a.m. on Wednesday. The search was challenging due to adverse weather conditions, including rain and snow. Heavy cloud cover in the early hours of Wednesday hampered the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department from deploying its helicopter. The U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Border Patrol also joined the search efforts, given the proximity of the crash site to the U.S.-Mexico border.

The five Marines, affiliated with Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 361, Marine Aircraft Group 16, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, remain unidentified, following military protocol that delays the disclosure of deceased service members’ identities until 24 hours after notifying the next of kin.

Maj. Gen. Michael J. Borgschulte, commanding general of 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, expressed deep sorrow in a statement, acknowledging the loss of the Marines who were on a training flight. He emphasized their commitment to duty and selfless service, extending condolences to the families.

President Joe Biden also addressed the tragedy, expressing heartbreak at the loss of the Marines. He conveyed condolences to the families, squadron, and the U.S. Marine Corps, praising the service members’ dedication and sacrifice.

Efforts are underway to recover the bodies of the Marines and the helicopter equipment, with an ongoing investigation into the crash.

Leave a Comment