Loved ones cope one year after helicopter crash

Posted at 6:18 PM, May 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-12 21:18:00-04

One year after a horrific helicopter crash in Nepal killed six Camp Pendleton-based Marines, loved ones are continuing to cope with the tragic loss.

On May 12, 2015, the Marines and other servicemembers were on a relief mission after a massive earthquake in the area.

Sgt. Eric Seaman, who was part of Camp Pendleton-based HMLA-469, was one of the men who died that day.

"Some days I feel OK, and there's other days I have to ask for help," said his widow, Samantha Seaman.

Seaman's nickname was "Spiderman," and he grabbed hold of her heart back in high school.

He proposed on Mission Beach, and they were married in a castle. Samantha felt like she was living in a fairytale.

"Life couldn't get any better," she said. "I knew how much I loved him when I married him, and then I saw him hold his son."

He and his three-year-old son, Roman, bonded over superheroes.

He was going to give Roman a superhero room when he came home from Nepal.

"He was the best dad," Samantha added. "He was so selfless."

Seaman was not supposed to be on the Huey helicopter, but he could not resist a rescue mission.

"He went out trying to help people," Samantha said.

A military officer showed up at her home and said he was missing. She did not sleep for four heartsick days as she waited for word.

"I was watching CNN, and it said on the screen that they were found and the condition of the bodies," she said.

Seaman, Capt. Dustin R. Lukasiewicz, Capt. Christopher L. Norgren, Sgt. Ward M. Johnson IV, Cpl. Sara A. Medina and Lance Cpl. Jacob A. Hug came home in caskets.

Samantha's love story was not supposed to end like that. They were supposed to live happily ever after.

She may cry, but she teaches their two kids to smile.

Samantha also gave Roman his superhero room, and he asked to have his dad on his wall.

"Dad's a superhero," Roman said.