A US Marines helicopter that went missing on Tuesday, May 12, 2015 with six Marines and two Nepalese soldiers aboard has been found, crashed into a mountainside in Nepal and was completely destroyed. There had been reports of zero survivors among the eight on board, Nepal’s top defence official said on Friday.
The helicopter is said to have been ferrying rice and tarps to earthquake victims in rugged terrain in Nepal, near a town hard hit by the latest deadly aftershocks of the quake that shook the whole nation of Nepal hard by the April 25, 2015 earthquake.
A 90-minute search by three Marine Corps V-22 tilt-rotor aircraft had earlier failed to locate the aircraft before nightfall and the air search was suspended thereafter, although a small search team did remain active for the same. This resulted in the discovery of the missing plane at the altitude of 11,200 feet near Kalinchowk hill in Dolakha district.
Six charred bodies had been recovered at the accident site and the search for the others was ongoing but the chance that any of them survived from the crash is analyzed to be nil, Defense secretary Ishwori Prasad Paudyal revealed.
The found bodies are being taken to Kathmandu for further recognition of personnel. Although the nationalities of the bodies remain unrevealed as by the order of the Defence Secretary.
The chopper was part of Operation Sahayogi Haat (Helping Hand) which was a joint effort between the military and the U.S. Agency for International Development. The operation has succeeded in delivering at least 50 tons of relief supplies, transported around about 273 personnel and has conducted more than 68 hours of flight time throughout the areas of Nepal.
Nepal has already seen so much destruction and missing of aids is yet another setback and pain that they have undergone. We do hope that they pass this tyranny of destiny too and those who have lost their lives or the lives of their loved ones be able to move on and sustain these terrible times.