Navy Helicopter Crashes in Atlantic; 2 Dead, 1 Missing

PHOTO: A Navy MH-53E "Sea Dragon" helicopter crashed into the Atlantic Ocean, Jan. 8, 2014.
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The Navy has confirmed the death of a second crewmember of the four rescued from the Atlantic Ocean Tuesday when their MH-53E "Sea Dragon" helicopter crashed 20 miles off the coast of Virginia Beach, Va. The search continues for a fifth crewmember who remains unaccounted for in the frigid waters of the Atlantic.

Mike Maus, a spokesman for Naval Air Forces Atlantic, confirmed the deaths of the crewmembers to ABC News.

As for the status of the other two crewmembers, Maus said they remain hospitalized at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, where one is listed in serious condition and the other has been upgraded to fair condition.

Earlier, Naval Air Forces Atlantic spokesman Cmdr. Mike Kafka said that the MH-53E helicopter was on a routine training mission with another MH-53 E helicopter at 11 a.m. when it "made an emergency water landing in the Atlantic Ocean about 20 miles east of the Fort Story/Virginia beach area."

When the helicopter went down the other MH-53E helicopter remained overhead and recovered four of the five crew members aboard the downed helicopter. Those survivors were then flown to the hospital.

Other Navy helicopters and Coast Guard vessels have responded to the area for a search and rescue for the missing crew member.

Kafka, a spokesman with Naval Air Forces Atlantic, said the helicopter belonged to the MH-14 helicopter squadron based at Naval Station Norfolk Chambers Field.

The MH-53E is a variant of the CH-53 heavy lift helicopter that is used as a minesweeper. The CH-53's are the largest helicopters in the U.S. military's inventory.

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