Human Remains Found in Black Hawk Crash Off Florida

7 Marines, 4 National Guard soldiers presumed dead
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 11, 2015 6:15 AM CDT
Updated Mar 11, 2015 7:57 AM CDT
11 Missing After Army Blackhawk Crashes
An Okaloosa County ambulance sits at the Eglin Air Force entrance in Fort Walton Beach, Fla., Wednesday, March 11, 2015.   (AP Photo/Northwest Daily News, Devon Ravine)

Eleven military personnel are missing after an Army helicopter crashed last night during a training exercise in the Florida Panhandle, and an anonymous official tells the AP they are presumed dead. "We have found some human remains," Eglin Air Force Base spokesman Andy Bourland tells NBC News. Seven Marines and four National Guard soldiers were on the UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter, one of two that took off from an airport in Destin, Fla., when it disappeared around 8:30pm. Around 2am, crews found debris from the aircraft around Okaloosa Island and on a military-owned beach between Pensacola and Destin. "We have begun to see debris washing ashore on both the north and the south side of the sound," Bourland tells CNN.

Bourland says visibility was limited—the National Weather Service had declared a dense fog advisory in the area—but it isn't yet clear if weather was a factor. The AP notes the remote beach on which the debris was found is often used in training missions for special ops units; trainees are often dropped into the water and tasked with making it back to shore. Eglin officials have revealed only that last night's training exercise was "routine;" the second helicopter returned to base safely. The missing Marines belong to a special ops group out of North Carolina's Camp Lejeune, while the soldiers are based in Hammond, La. They have not been identified pending notification of next of kin. (A helicopter crash yesterday in Argentina killed 10, including three French sports stars.)

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