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Osprey aircraft found, with remains of 5 crew, by US, Japanese divers

Robert Besser
8 Dec 2023

TOKYO, Japan: This week, the U.S. Air Force said that divers have discovered the wreckage and the remains of five crew members from a CV-22 Osprey aircraft that crashed last week off southwestern Japan.

The plane, which was carrying eight American personnel, crashed on November 29 off Yakushima island while on a training mission.

Over the weekend, the U.S. military identified one confirmed victim as Air Force Staff Sgt. Jacob Galliher of Pittsfield, Massachusetts.

Two of the five newly located remains have been recovered, but their identities have yet to be determined, and the search is continuing for the two people who are still missing, said the Air Force Special Operations Command.

The U.S.-made Osprey, a hybrid aircraft that takes off and lands like a helicopter but can rotate its propellers forward and cruise much faster, has been involved in several crashes, including in Japan.

Japan has suspended all flights of its own fleet of 14 Ospreys, and Japanese officials said they have asked the U.S. military to resume Osprey flights only after ensuring their safety.

On Sunday, coast guard officials said that wreckage that it collected with the help of local fishing boats was handed over to the U.S. military for examination. Japan's military said the debris it has collected would also be handed over to the U.S.

Local fishing boats have helped in the search, giving up their daily catch. Public broadcaster NHK said the Defense Ministry plans to cover their lost income and fuel.

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