Published: Thu, July 13, 2017
World Media | By Joan Schultz

US Marine Corps Aircraft Crashes In Mississippi, Leaving 16 Dead

US Marine Corps Aircraft Crashes In Mississippi, Leaving 16 Dead

At least 16 people were killed after a United States military transport plane crashed in the Delta region of southern U.S. state of MS region on Monday (July 11) evening, according to officials.

There were 15 Marines, both active-duty members of the corps and reservists, and one Navy corpsman aboard the plane when it went down Monday afternoon.

Video footages of the crash site showed a plume of smoke billowing above the wrecked plane. Marine Corps spokeswoman Capt. Sarah Burns said in a statement that a Marine KC-130 "experienced a mishap" Monday evening but provided no further details.

The flight originated from the Marine Corps Air Station in Cherry Point, North Carolina, "as the squadron was supporting a requirement to transport personnel and equipment from there" to the Naval Air Field in El Centro, California.

Greenwood Fire Chief Marcus Banks told the Greenwood Commonwealth that debris from the plane was scattered in a radius of about 5 miles (8 kilometers).

The crash left a five-mile trail of debris, the local Clarion-Ledger newspaper reported.

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There were conflicting reports early on as to how many people were killed as first responders began to recover bodies from the crash site.

The FBI has confirmed they have sent agents to the scene to aid in the investigation, but they do not now believe the crash was the result of foul play.

The Marine Corps, which said it operated the plane, originally announced the crash via Twitter at about 8:30 p.m. ET. We just don't know what it'll do. The names of the dead were being withheld until family members were notified.

The cause of the crash is still unknown at the moment, but the incident is under investigation.

President Donald Trump called the crash "heartbreaking". The crash killed at least 16 people who were aboard the aircraft.

Secretary of the Interior and Navy SEAL Ryan Zinke tweeted his condolences saying: "Please join me in praying for or sending good thoughts to the families and unit of the Marines we lost tonight in the C 130 crash".

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