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Marine CH-53 Crashes in Gulf of Aden, All Marines and Sailors Recovered Safely

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U.S. Marine Corps CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter with Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 263 (Reinforced), 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), prepares to land aboard the amphibious transport dock ship USS the Mesa Verde (LPD-19) on Aug. 4, 2014. US Navy Photo

U.S. Marine Corps CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter with Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 263 (Reinforced), 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), prepares to land aboard the amphibious transport dock ship USS the Mesa Verde (LPD-19) on Aug. 4, 2014. US Navy Photo

A Marine CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter crashed in route from an African U.S. military base in Africa to the amphibious warship USS Mesa Verde (LPD-19) U.S. Naval Forces Central Command said on Monday.

All 25 personnel were recovered from the crash — 17 Marines and eight sailors, according to the statement.

“The crash was not a result of hostile activity. The aircraft was transferring the Marines and Sailors back to Mesa Verde from training ashore in nearby Djibouti,” read the statement.

Some personnel with minor injuries were treated onboard the ship.


View Camp Lemonnier in a larger map

CENTCOM didn’t specify the origin of the flight, but it was likely from Camp Lemonnier outside of Djibouti’s capital. The base is the headquarters of the U.S. counter terrorism campaign in Africa and has in the past hosted CH-53 squadrons.

“Camp Lemonnier supports approximately 4,000 U.S., joint and allied forces military and civilian personnel and U.S. Department of Defense contractors,” U.S. Navy information on the installation.

The cause of the crash is under investigation.

In 2006, two CH-53Es crashed of the coast of Djibouti resulting in 10 deaths.

  • silencedogoodreturns

    it’s not “in route.” It’s also not “enroute.” The correct phrase and grammar is “en route.”

  • Secundius

    I’m kinda surprised they didn’t use a OSPREY!!!