A Marine who died in North Carolina, apparently falling from an aircraft during a training exercise, is from Illinois.
Sue Hancock, of Coal City near Joliet, told news reporters she was notified by the Marines Tuesday that her son, Steven Hancock, was found deceased in a state forest that afternoon about 45 miles west of Marine Corps Air Station New River.
Hancock was in the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing and fell from an MV-22B Osprey tilt rotor aircraft on Monday, according to the Marines.
Hancock graduated from Coal City High School in 2011.
“We deeply mourn the loss of a member of the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing family today. I’d like to extend my sincerest condolences to the family and loved ones of our Marine,” Maj. Gen. Robert Hedelund, 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing commanding general, said in a statement.. “I also want to extend my thanks to the community for their tireless efforts throughout this search.”
More than 100 Marines and community members participated in the search.
First Lt. Hector Alejandro, media officer for the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing at Cherry Point, told reports the Marines are not sure how Hancock fell from the aircraft.
Alejandro said the marines are secured by seat belts or tether cables. Lt. Col. Christian Harshberger told CNN the Osprey's cargo bay door remains open during training procedures.