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Boats 04-01-2019 10:37 AM

Two US Marines killed in helicopter crash during training exercise
Two US Marines killed in helicopter crash during training exercise
By: BBC 4-1-19

Photo of the type of aircraft Link:
An AH-1Z Viper helicopter is serviced in Yuma

Two US Marine pilots were killed in a helicopter crash during a training exercise in Arizona, US officials have said.

Their AH-1Z Viper helicopter went down near the Marine Corps Air Station in Yuma on Saturday around 20:45 local time (05:45 GMT Sunday).

The pilots were taking part in a "routine training mission", the Marines said in a news release.

The cause of the crash is currently under investigation.

Their mission was part of the "Weapons and Tactics Instructor course 2-19", the Marines said on Sunday.

The service members have not been publicly identified, pending family notifications.

The base is located about 2 miles (3.2km) from Yuma, in the southeastern part of Arizona near the US-Mexico border.

The 1,300 square mile facility (3,367 km/sq) is one of the largest military installations in the world, according to the Associated Press.

In a tweet on Sunday, the Marines said: "Our condolences go out to the families and friends of our two pilots who we lost last night in Yuma".


Personal note: Condolences go out to the Family members and Friend's of these two lost pilots. Their names are not yet given by the Marine Corp pending family notifications.

Respects by both Boats & PatriotFile Members.

Boats 04-03-2019 04:00 PM

Update: Marines identify two pilots killed in AH-1Z Viper helicopter crash
Marines identify two pilots killed in AH-1Z Viper helicopter crash
By: Shawn Snow / Marine Times 4-3-19

Update: Photo link:
An AH-1Z with Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron (HMLA) 369, Marine Aircraft Group (MAG) 39, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW), takes off during a training exercise at Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center (MCAGCC) Twentynine Palms, Calif., Feb. 15. (Lance Cpl. Julian Elliott-Drouin/Marine Corps)

The Marine Corps has identified two Marine pilots killed in the Saturday AH-1Z Viper helicopter crash at the Yuma, Arizona, air station.

Maj. Matthew M. Wiegand, 34, of Ambler, Pennsylvania, and Capt. Travis W. Brannon, 30, of Nashville, Tennessee, lost their lives in the Viper crash while conducting routine training during the semi-annual Weapons and Tactics Instructor Course at the sprawling Yuma air station, the Corps said in a command release.

“We join the families of Maj. Wiegand and Capt. Brannon in mourning the loss of a loved one,” Col. Kelvin W. Gallman, commanding officer of Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron One, said in the command release.

“Our most valued assets are the individual Marines and our primary focus is supporting the families during this difficult time.”

Photo link:
Capt. Travis Brannon, of Nashville, Tenn. (Marine Corps)

Wiegand joined the Corps in 2008 and was assigned to Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron One. He had previously deployed to Okinawa, Japan, as part of the Corps’ Unit Deployment Program.

He was qualified with both the AH-1W Super Cobra and AH-1Z Viper. The Viper is a replacement to the Corps’ legacy AH-1W fleet.

Brannon was a pilot assigned to Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron (HMLA) 367, Marine Aircraft Group 24, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing out of Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, according to details in the command release.

Brannon was in Yuma participating in Weapons and Tactics Instructor course 2-19, according to the release.

He had previous deployment experience in support of the Marine Rotational Force Darwin, Australia.

“It is a somber day for the entire Marine Air Ground Task Force Training Command (MAGTFTC) as we mourn this tremendous loss. Our thoughts and prayers remain with their families and loved ones during this extremely difficult time,” Brig. Gen. Roger B. Turner Jr., commanding general, MAGTFTC, Twentynine Palms, California, said in the command release.

The incident is currently under investigation.

About the writer: Shawn Snow is the senior reporter for Marine Corps Times and a Marine Corps veteran.


Personal note: Condolences to the Family & Friends of these two Marines.

From all the members of the web site


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