One of the two U.S. Marines found following a deadly plane crash off the coast of Japan has been “pronounced deceased,” the U.S. Marine Corps said in a statement.
He was the pilot of the F/A-18 fighter jet, found approximately 10 hours after the crash occurred.
“The Marine Corps identifies Captain Jahmar F. Resilard, 28, as the Marine who was pronounced deceased after he was found during search and rescue operations off the coast of Kochi, Japan on Dec. 6,” the statement reads. “Resilard is one of two Marines who have been found after an F/A-18 and KC-130 mishap occurred around 2 a.m. local time. Resilard, served as an F/A-18 pilot with Marine All Weather Fighter Attack Squadron 242 (VMFA(AW)-242), stationed on Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni in Yamaguchi, Japan. … Captain Resilard is from Miramar, Florida. His personal decorations include the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and National Defense Service Medal.”
“We ask that media respects the family's privacy during this challenging time,” writes the U.S. Marine Corps.
Search and rescue operations reportedly expanded for the five Marines still missing after two aircraft collided midair and crashed early Thursday morning, local time, during what the Marines confirmed was a "routine training and aerial refueling" exercise.
According to a report by CNN, Japan’s Ministry of Defense has widened its search for the crewmen “to account for ocean currents,” as it has been over four days since the crash occurred.
“On Friday, the US 7th Fleet said it was supporting ongoing search and rescue efforts with a Navy P-8A Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance Aircraft flying out of Kadena Air Force Base on the island of Okinawa,” reports CNN. “Three patrol planes and three vessels from Japan's Self Defense Force as well as six patrol ships and two fixed-wing airplanes from the Coast Guard have joined the search.”
Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force immediately responded to the U.S. Marine Corps in their search and rescue operation for the crewmen.
The Marine Corps said in its most recent press release that the “aircraft mishap” remains under investigation.