A search was underway Friday morning, July 31, for eight U.S. Marines missing following a deadly training mishap off the coast of San Clemente Island.
The accident happened about 5:45 p.m. Thursday when an amphibious-assault vehicle carrying 15 Marines and one Navy sailor began to take on water during a training exercise, according to the United States Marine Corps.
A Marine assigned to the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, based out of Camp Pendleton, was taken to a hospital in La Jolla where they died.
1 Marine has died, 8 service members remain missing and 2 were injured after an AAV mishap July 30 off the coast of Southern California. All are assigned to the 15th MEU. Search and rescue efforts are still underway with support from the Navy and Coast Guard.
— I MEF (@1stMEF) July 31, 2020
Two Marines were injured, one critically, five military personnel were rescued and eight others were missing and being searched for by the Navy’s USS John Finn, three Navy helicopters, several smaller Navy vessels and a U.S. Coast Guard ship and helicopter, the Marines said.
San Clemente Island is 55 miles west of Orange County, often admist in marine layer and haze with its silhouette sometimes visibile from the mainland. Catalina Island is 20 miles to the north of it.
“We are deeply saddened by this tragic incident,” Colonel Christopher Bronzi of the unit tweeted early Friday. “I ask that you keep our Marines, sailors, and their families in your prayers as we continue our search.”
The name of the Marine who died was not disclosed.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.
Source: Orange County Register