published Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

U.S. Marine Corps helicopter crashes in Gulf of Aden; all aboard rescued

WASHINGTON — A Marine Corps helicopter with 25 aboard crashed Monday in the Gulf of Aden, and all aboard were rescued, the Navy said.

The 17 Marines and eight Navy sailors were recovered and were on board the USS Mesa Verde, and some who sustained minor injuries were treated on the ship.

The CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter crashed as it attempted to land on the ship, which has a big landing deck on the back. The Navy said the crash was not the result of hostile activity, but the aircraft was transferring troops back to the ship from training in nearby Djibouti.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered the USS Mesa Verde, an amphibious transport dock ship based at Norfolk, Virginia, into the Persian Gulf earlier this summer as concern grew over the Islamic State terrorist group's advance on Iraq's capital, Baghdad.

The ship transports and lands Marines and other troops, their equipment and supplies, aided by helicopters and vertical takeoff and landing aircraft.

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