Canary Islands: Marine Lost at Sea
Email dated 10 April 2021
In 1992 while en route from a peace keeping operation off the coast of Angola, on the USS Guam speeding to the Bihac pocket in Yugoslavia, a CH53E, Elvis 21, attached to HMM-261, 22nd MUESOC, was lost at sea during a training flight.
The Helicopter had a crew of 5. One crew member, the copilot, survived the crash, but died due to exposure. The aircraft and the remaining four crew members were left in place, between the Canary Islands and Morocco in approximately a depth of 1500-2000 feet of water. The exact location was verified with GPS on rescue craft and Sonar pings, and is contained in the attached report.
They should be recovered, and brought home, Marines do not abandon Marines. We now have proven Ocean recovery capability to a depth of 20,000 feet. Recently the Navy did just that, they recovered a helicopter at a record depth of 20,000 feet. The recovery of the crew remains are well within current recovery depth capabilities.
Any assistance in this effort would be greatly appreciated.
Matthew H. Raver
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