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Marine Plane Encountered Problems While Cruising But Cause Of Crash Is Still Unknown
Updated July 13, 2017 8:06 AM
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(WASHINGTON) - The Marine KC-130T tanker-transport aircraft that crashed in rural northwestern Mississippi on Monday, killing 15 Marines and a sailor, experienced problems "at cruise altitude" that potentially led to the crash, a Marine general said Wednesday.

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Brig. Gen. Bradley James, the commander of 4th Marine Aircraft Wing of the Marine Reserves, said during a brief news conference in Itta Bena, Miss., that the crash is still under investigation and the cause is not yet known.

"Indications are something went wrong at cruise altitude. There is a large debris pattern," James said. The debris left two large impact areas a mile apart, a half mile north and south of Highway 82, which runs through the Southern United States.

Talk Media News reports, the KC-130T crashed in Itta Bena, about 80 miles north of Jackson, after taking off from Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C. The plane was headed to Naval Air Facility El Centro, Calif. and then to Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz. The mission was to deliver seven members of the Marines' elite special operations 2nd Raider Battalion, who were traveling to a pre-deployment training exercise in Yuma.

Among those killed are six Marine commandos and a Navy hospital corpsman assigned to that unit based at Camp Lejeune, N.C. The other nine killed were crew members from the Marine Aerial Refueling and Transport Squadron 452, Marine Air Group 49, 4th Marine Aircraft Wing based in Newburgh, N.Y.

Governor Eric J. Holcomb offered the following statement regarding the death of Indiana native and Navy corpsman Ryan Lohrey, who was identified as one of 16 total servicemen who lost their lives in a plane crash.

"Janet and I offer sincere condolences to the family and friends of Indiana's own Ryan Lohrey, a Navy corpsman who lost his life in a tragic plane crash this week along with 15 other servicemen. Words cannot express the depth of sorrow I feel for his wife and two young children, especially. I know Hoosiers around the state join me in honoring his service and contributions to our community and our country."

"Family members have been notified. Out of respect for the families, we will not release the names or specifics as of now; expect the roster of names within the next few days," James said.



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