Riverside man among 8 who died in U.S. Air Force crash near Japan – Orange County Register

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A Riverside resident was among the eight members of the U.S. Air Force crew that perished in last week’s crash of a CV-22B Osprey during a training mission off of the coast of Japan, the Department of Defense announced on Tuesday, Dec. 5.

Maj. Luke A. Unrath, 34, was a CV-22 pilot and flight commander assigned to the 21st Special Operations Squadron, 353rd Special Operations Wing, Yokota Air Base, Japan, the DOD said in a news release.

No further biographical information was immediately provided for him. His family plans to publicly talk about Unrath at a later date, a DOD spokeswoman said.

The others who died in the Nov. 29 collision:

• Staff Sgt. Jake Galliher, 24, of Pittsfield, Massachusetts

• Maj. Jeffrey T. Hoernemann, 32, of Andover, Minnesota

• Maj. Eric V. Spendlove, 36, of St. George, Utah

• Capt. Terrell K. Brayman, 32, of Pittsford, New York

• Tech. Sgt. Zachary E. Lavoy, 33, of Oviedo, Florida

• Staff Sgt. Jake M. Turnage, 25, of Kennesaw, Georgia

• Senior Airman Brian K. Johnson, 32, of Reynoldsburg, Ohio

“Jill and I were heartbroken to learn of the loss of eight American service members when their aircraft crashed off the coast of Japan last week during a routine training mission,” President Joe Biden said in a statement released by the White House. “Our service members and their families are the backbone of our nation. We owe them everything. Jill and I are praying for the families and friends who lost a loved one in this terrible accident.”

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III promised a thorough investigation.

“I am deeply saddened by the loss of eight American troops,” Austin said in a written statement. “The entire Department of Defense mourns alongside the families and the loved ones of those who lost their lives in the service of their country. My heart also goes out to those who were serving alongside these (service members) in Japan.”

The military is now focused on recovering the remains and the aircraft. Of the eight airmen, the remains of three have been recovered, the remains of another three have been located and are in the process of being recovered and the remains of two are still being sought, the DOD said.

An Osprey is a tilt-rotor aircraft that can take off and land like a helicopter and fly like an airplane.

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