Incident Date 20150902 HMH-464 CH-53E - unknown - - Hard landing during night operations
Lewis, Jonathan SSgt Passenger HMH-464 MAG-29/2ndMAW 2015-09-02
NY Daily News Article
Marine killed in Camp Lejeune helicopter hard landing ID’d as Jonathan Lewis
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Friday, September 4, 2015, 6:58 PM
RALEIGH, N.C. — The U.S. Marine who died during a helicopter accident at Camp Lejeune was part of a Virginia-based anti-terror and security team training on how to use ropes to access difficult terrain, officials said Friday.
Military officials identified the dead Marine as 31-year-old Staff Sgt. Jonathan Lewis from Fleet Anti-Terrorism Security Team, Company B, based in Yorktown, Virginia. He was a native of Warrenton, Virginia.
Two Marines remained hospitalized in stable condition Friday, while nine have been treated and released.
About 20 Marines from Virginia and North Carolina were participating Wednesday night in training that requires them to exit through the back of a helicopter using suspended ropes. The rappelling and fast-rope techniques allow Marines to enter terrain where helicopter landings would be difficult.
“The training requires the highest-caliber Marine,” said Col. Jeffrey Kenney, officer in charge of the Expeditionary Operations Training Group. He described the training as “high-risk” but also “invaluable” because it allows Marines to deploy anywhere.
A news release said Lewis joined the Marines in 2006, and he received the Iraq Campaign Medal among other awards.
Staff Sgt. Jonathan Lewis from Fleet Anti-Terrorism Security Team, Company B, based in Yorktown, Virginia, died after a helicopter mishap Wednesday.
Marine officials said at a news conference that Lewis was inside the CH-53E Super Stallion when it landed harder and faster than normal around 9 p.m. in a Camp Lejeune training area. They declined to elaborate on how the accident happened or discuss the maintenance history of the helicopter.
Col. Sean Salene, commanding officer of Marine Aircraft Group 29, said that the aircraft is damaged and that officials haven’t determined whether it will return to service.
A 2003 edition of the Marines’ manual for Helicopter Rope Suspension Techniques warns of the potential for injury or death in the training. It also discusses how nighttime operations can be a challenge, lays out safety procedures and primes Marines on how wind from the helicopter’s rotors can affect them.
It’s not clear if those factors played a role; the Marines said a full investigation will take weeks or months. The National Weather Service said skies were clear and winds were calm at the time.
The helicopter was assigned to Heavy Helicopter Squadron-464, Marine Aircraft group-29, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing.
A Marine Corps CH-53E helicopter made a hard landing in North Carolina, killing one Marine and injuring nine other.
The Super Stallion, a massive, heavy-lift helicopter, is the largest in the military and considered the Marine Corps’ workhorse. It stands nearly three stories tall and has a top speed of 172 mph.
It was used in Afghanistan and Iraq to ferry troops and equipment to remote bases.
Patriot Guard Riders
SSgt Jonathan Edward Lewis, 31, USMC, Dale City, VA, Quantico National Cemetery September 14, 2015
This is a Confirmed PGR Quantico National Cemetery Mission Plan.
SSgt Jonathan E. Lewis, 31, USMC, died in a training accident on 2 September, 2015, at Camp Lejeune, NC. He was a native of Warrenton, Virginia and a 2002 graduate of Fauquier High School. He has two combat deployments to Iraq and his awards include: Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Good Conduct Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal and National Defense Service Medal. He is survived by his wife of five years.
PGR [Patriot Guard Riders] has been invited to attend the services for SSgt Lewis by his wife and we will be there to stand tall, silent and proud in Honor of SSgtLewis, his family and comrades at arms. Muster will be at Mountcastle Turch Funeral Home, where we will stand a Flag Line, followed by an Escort to the Memorial Service at Semper Fidelis Memorial Chapel, at the Marine Corps Museum. Following this service, we will escort SSgt Lewis to Quantico National Cemetery, where he will be interned at 1400 hours.
Camp Lejeune, NC - The Marine Corps has identified the Marine killed in a Wednesday night training accident at Camp Lejeune as 31-year-old SSgt. Jonathan Lewis of Warrenton, Virginia.
SSgt. Lewis was assigned to Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team (FAST), Company B, Marine Corps Security Force Regiment at Naval Weapons Station Yorktown.
1 killed, several injured in helicopter training exercise at Camp Lejeune
The training accident occurred Wednesday night around 9:00 p.m. when a CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter from Heavy Helicopter Squadron 464 (HMH-464), Marine Aircraft group-29, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing based at MCAS New River experienced a hard landing.
Ssgt. Lewis' specialty was communications, according to Marine Corps officials. They say he was inside the helicopter when the incident occurred.
After the incident, SSgt. Lewis was airlifted to Naval Hospital Camp Lejeune and pronounced deceased at the hospital.
Seven other Marines were treated at Naval Hospital Camp Lejeune. Three additional Marines were transported to Onslow Memorial Hospital in Jacksonville, NC. One Marine was taken to Vidant Medical Center in Greenville.
Only two Marines remain hospitalized at this time where they are reportedly stable.