Marines identify crew killed, injured in crash

Alicia and Cpl. Jonathan D. Faircloth. Photo courtesy Faircloth family.
Alicia and Cpl. Jonathan D. Faircloth. Photo courtesy Faircloth family.

KANEOHE (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Kaneohe Marine who died and three other Marines who were injured Tuesday night when the CH-53 Sea Stallion they were flying was forced to execute and emergency landing in Kaneohe Bay were identified Thursday.

Cpl. Jonathan D. Faircloth, an aerial observer with Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 363, Marine Air Group 24, was pronounced dead by the state medical examiner. His body was taken to Tripler Army Medical Center Tuesday night.

Faircloth, 22, of Mechanicsburg, Pa., joined the squadron in April, 2007, and deployed with them to Iraq in 2008 and Afghanistan in 2010. He became a Marine in August, 2006.

Faircloth is survived by his wife, Alicia, two siblings, James and Danielle, and his parents, Dean and Beverly Faircloth, who described their son as a true gentleman and a happy person who loved the Marine Corps and his job.

Faircloth's personal awards include four Air Medals, two Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals, Iraq and Afghanistan Campaign Medals, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and the National Defense Service Medal.

The three HMH-363 crewmen injured during the same emergency landing were pilot Maj. Clinton J. Collins, copilot Capt. Kevin F. Hayles, and crew chief Cpl. Ronnie E. Brandafino. All three Marines were transported to Queen's Medical Center in Honolulu for treatment of their injuries and were last reported in stable condition.

While Hayles has joined the squadron recently, Collins has deployed with HMH-363 once to Afghanistan and Brandafino, who joined the squadron in 2008 deployed with them to Iraq that year and to Afghanistan in 2010. Collins also deployed with HMH-362, also based at MCAS Kaneohe Bay, to Iraq in 2007.

This incident is under investigation.

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