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Coast Guard Suspends Search For Missing Sailor From Helo Crash

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MH-53E from Mine Countermeasure Squadron 14 "Vanguard" (HM-14) in 2006. US Navy Photo

MH-53E from Mine Countermeasure Squadron 14 “Vanguard” (HM-14) in 2006. US Navy Photo

The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended a search for the missing crewmember from a MH-53E Sea Dragon that crashed off the coast of Virginia Beach, Va. at 3:30 p.m. EST Wednesday, Navy officials told USNI News.

The Navy has also identified the two-crew members who died following rescue from the crash.

Naval Academy graduate Lt. Wesley Van Dorn, 29, of Greensboro, N.C. and AW3 Brian Collins, 25, of Truckee, Calif. both died Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, Navy officials told USNI News.

In total, four of the five crew from the downed helicopter were rescued from the crash site.

One has been released from the hospital; the other is good condition, according to the Navy.

The helicopter and crew were assigned to Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron 14 “Vanguard” (HM-14) based at Naval Station Norfolk.

The helicopter was conducting a training mission with a second Sea Dragon when the helicopter went down.

The Navy had scrambled two Sea Hawks shortly after the 11 a.m. crash from Naval Station Norfolk that recovered the four sailors on the surface about 45 minutes after the MH-53 went down.

Two of the sailors were in a raft dropped by the second Sea Dragon while two were rescued from in the water.

Navy Sea Hawk helicopter and Coast Guardsmen from the U.S. Coast Guard patrol boat Shearwater (WPB 87349) search for a crew member of an MH-53E Sea Dragon helicopter that crashed, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014. U.S. Coast Guard Photo

Navy Sea Hawk helicopter and Coast Guardsmen from the U.S. Coast Guard patrol boat Shearwater (WPB 87349) search for a crew member of an MH-53E Sea Dragon helicopter that crashed, Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014. U.S. Coast Guard Photo

Assets in the search and rescue operation include U.S. Coast Guard 87-foot patrol boat Shearwater in the search and rescue operations include the Guided Missile Destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG-109), the salvage vessel USNS Grasp (T-ARS-51), the Amphibious Transport Dock ship USS Mesa Verde (LPD-19), and the dry cargo ship USNS Medgar Evans (T-AKE-13).

Virginia Beach Fire and Rescue described a half-mile debris field left after the helicopter went down.

The Navy has begun investigating the cause of the crash and will continue to look for the missing sailor.