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Navy recovers remains, wreckage from deadly helicopter crash off San Diego

Navy Helicopter Crash
Posted at 10:40 AM, Oct 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-12 13:41:14-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — The U.S. Navy has recovered human remains and the wreckage of the MH-60S Seahawk helicopter that crashed into the waters of San Diego in August.

Navy officials said Tuesday that the wreckage from the crash and five human remains were recovered on Friday, Oct. 8, from about 5,300-feet deep in the ocean. The service vessel HOS Bayou brought the remains to Naval Air Station North Island on Sunday, Oct. 10, and they were transferred to Dover Air Force Base, Dela., for identification.

The crash on Aug. 31 occurred aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln about 60 nautical miles off the San Diego coast at around 4:30 p.m. Official said the helicopter was conducting routine flight operations when it touched down on the flight deck and "experienced side-to-side vibrations." The vibrations caused the main rotor to strike the deck and the aircraft to fall over the side of the aircraft carrier, according to a mishap summary by the U.S. Navy’s Safety Center.

Sailors identified following helicopter crash.png

Five sailors who were aboard the aircraft at the time of the crash were declared dead. They have been identified as Lt. Bradley A. Foster, 29, a pilot from Oakhurst, Calif.; Lt. Paul R. Fridley, 28, a pilot from Annandale, Va.; Naval Air Crewman (Helicopter) 2nd Class James P. Buriak, 31, from Salem, Va.; Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Sarah F. Burns, 31, from Severna Park, Md.; and Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Bailey J. Tucker, 21, from St. Louis, Mo.

One sailor was recovered after the crash and five other sailors were injured while on deck, according to the Navy.

The Navy's investigation into the crash was still ongoing as of Tuesday.