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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

5 US Marines found dead after California helicopter crash

San Diego CA - February 6: A Marine CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter flies during training at MCAS Miramar on Tuesday, February 6, 2024.   (K.C. Alfred/The San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS)
By Nacha Cattan Bloomberg News

The five U.S. Marines whose helicopter crashed in a remote area of California during a training flight have been found dead.

“To the families of our fallen Marines, we send our deepest condolences and commit to ensuring your support and care during this incredibly difficult time,” Major General Michael Borgschulte of the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing said in a statement Thursday.

The aircraft was located Wednesday morning in Pine Valley, a mountainous area close to an hour’s drive from San Diego, sparking a search-and-rescue mission by the Marine Corps and the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department.

Southern California has been battered by heavy rain and mountain snow for days. The weather conditions proved challenging for rescue crews trying to locate the crew.

The Marines were flying a CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter from Creech Air Force Base near Las Vegas and were returning home to a base in San Diego. The Sheriff’s Department said it was notified early Wednesday that the craft was overdue for arrival.