Five US Marines were killed in a helicopter crash in California.
The plane, a CH-53E Super Stallion, crashed on Tuesday night during… Stormy weather In the mountains outside San Diego.
The helicopter was discovered Wednesday morning near the mountain community of Pine Valley, about 45 miles from the city, the Army said.
President Joe Biden said in a statement that he and First Lady Jill Biden were “saddened” when they learned of the deaths of the two Marines.
“Our service members represent the best of our nation — and these five Marines were no exception,” Biden said.
The names of the Marines killed were not immediately released, but they were assigned to Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 361, Marine Aircraft Group 16, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, army He said.
“It is with a heavy heart and deep sadness that I share with you the loss of five outstanding Marines from the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing and the Flying Tigers,” Maj. Gen. Michael J. Burgsholt, commander of the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, said in a statement.
The helicopter was returning to Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in San Diego after training at Creech Air Force Base in the northwestern United States. Las vigas.
Search and rescue efforts began after a turbulent storm dumped heavy snow and record rain on California.
Federal, state and local agencies participated in the operation, including the U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Border Patrol, San Diego County Police Department and the state Civil Air Patrol.
The Super Stallion helicopter – the US military's largest – can carry dozens of people and requires a crew of four – pilot, co-pilot, crew chief and mechanic.
More than 130 aircraft are in service in the US military, with the aircraft performing “the full range of military combat operations in Beirut, Somalia, the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya,” according to the US Navy website.
The Super Stallion helicopter has been involved in several other fatal accidents.
Four US Marines were killed in 2018 when their plane crashed near the California-Mexico border during a training mission.
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The Marine Corps ruled out pilot error in the accident. The victims' families later filed a lawsuit against two companies that they claimed supplied a defective part that they blamed for the accident.
In 2005, a Super Stallion was caught in a sandstorm IraqWhich killed 31 people on board. The accident, blamed on pilot error, was the deadliest loss to American forces during the war.