A 26-year-old New Hampshire man is being remembered as a “courageous individual who made the ultimate sacrifice” days after he and 4 different Marines died when a army helicopter went down within the mountains exterior San Diego.
The Marine Corps on Friday recognized Jack Casey, of Dover, as one of many Marines who died in what officers described as a “routine military helicopter training flight” exterior San Diego throughout a “historic storm.”
Casey, a CH-53E helicopter pilot, graduated from St. Thomas Aquinas High School, a non-public Catholic faculty in Dover, in 2015 and commissioned into the Marines in May 2019. He then earned a promotion to captain final September, additionally being awarded a National Defense Service Medal throughout his service.
Officials at St. Mary Academy of Dover, a non-public Okay-8 Catholic faculty, of which Casey graduated from in 2011, honored their former scholar on social media Friday.
“It is with heavy hearts that we inform our community of the passing of one of our former students, Jack Casey, while bravely serving our country as a member of the United States Marines,” the college posted on Facebook. “Jack was not only a dedicated student during his time with us but also a courageous individual who made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our nation’s freedoms. Jack’s unwavering commitment to service and bravery exemplifies the values we hold dear in our community.”
A photograph within the publish reveals Casey as a teen smiling, carrying a college basketball uniform, and one other of him in a while instructing kids.
The Marines recognized the 4 different troops as Lance Cpl. Donovan Davis, 21, of Kansas; Capt. Miguel Nava, 28, of Michigan; Alec Langen, 23, of Arizona; and Capt. Benjamin Moulton, 27, of Idaho.
New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu, in an announcement, directed all flags on public buildings and grounds within the Granite State to fly at half-staff.
“Capt. Jack Casey gave his life while serving his country,” Sununu mentioned. “Capt. Jack Casey’s death is a profound loss for his family, his community, New Hampshire, and the country.”
Military officers confirmed Thursday that each one 5 Marines had been killed when their helicopter went down throughout stormy climate, and efforts had been underway to get well their stays, which is able to take weeks due to the tough terrain and climate, mentioned Col. James C. Ford, operations officer with third Marine Aircraft Wing. In the meantime, Marines are staying with the stays round the clock to stick to their ethos of by no means leaving any Marine behind.
The adorned Marines had been assigned to Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 361, Marine Aircraft Group 16, third Marine Aircraft Wing and had been based mostly at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in San Diego.
The Marines had been flying Tuesday night time from Creech Air Force Base, northwest of Las Vegas, the place that they had been doing unit-level coaching and had been returning dwelling to Miramar, protection officers mentioned.
“We have been confronted with a tragedy that is every service family’s worst fear,” mentioned Lt. Col. Nicholas J. Harvey, commanding officer of the squadron. “The Flying Tigers family stands strong and includes the friends and community who have supported our squadron during this challenging time. We will get through this together.”
The CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter — the most important helicopter within the army, designed to fly in harsh situations — had gone lacking as a storm dumped heavy snow and report rain over California.
Civilian authorities looking on floor and by air situated the plane simply after 9 a.m. Wednesday close to the mountain group of Pine Valley, a few 45-mile drive from San Diego, however snowy situations made it difficult to achieve entry on the bottom, officers mentioned.
President Biden provided his condolences in an announcement Thursday.
“Our service members represent the very best of our nation—and these five Marines were no exception,” he mentioned. “Today, as we mourn this profound loss, we honor their selfless service and ultimate sacrifice—and reaffirm the sacred obligation we bear to all those who wear the uniform and their families.”
Casey attended Virginia Military Institute, the place he majored in physics and served as Company I commander as a senior within the 2018-19 tutorial yr. Classmate, Capt. Eli Facemire, remembered what Casey meant to the institute in a publish on its web site Friday afternoon, describing the loss of life as a “jarring loss.”
“Jack was absolutely loved by our class, and all our brother rats knew that Jack loved them,” Facemire wrote. “He bought in fully to his relationships and opportunities, setting an example of friendship and leadership that was looked up to not only by members of the lower classes, but also by his brother rats. His charisma and humility shined through in all he did, and his infectious, fun-loving attitude made him a tremendous joy to simply be around.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report