UPDATED: Coalition helicopter crashes in Sinjar, kills service member
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A coalition service member was killed and several injured when a helicopter crashed in Iraq at approximately 10:00 pm on August 19.
“The aircraft was conducting a partnered counterterrorism mission in support of Operation Inherent Resolve,” the US-led coalition said in a statement received by Kurdistan 24.
“All personnel were recovered by Coalition forces immediately following the incident, and three were evacuated for further treatment,” the statement added.
The location of the crash was withheld until the US Department of Defense released a press statement Tuesday which confirmed that the incident took place in SInjar (Shingal), in Nineveh Province.
In the statement, it also identified the fallen soldier as Chief Warrant Officer 3 Taylor J. Galvin, 34, from Spokane, Washington.
Newsweek reported it was an MH-60 Blackhawk which was returning to base after conducting a small-scale raid in an undisclosed region. US Special Forces (SOF) fly these helicopters in support of both SOF and regular forces.
The US-led coalition said that there are no indications the crash was caused by hostile fire. The incident is under investigation.
“Our heartfelt condolence to the family of @CJTFOIR service member who died in a helicopter crash in #Iraq last night. While the incident was not a result of enemy fire, it further demonstrates the sacrifices of #Coalition service members & and the danger they face every day,” Army Colonel Sean Ryan Spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR) said on Twitter on Monday.
“We mourn the loss of a @coaliton service member here in #Iraq last night during partnered operators against #ISIS terrorists,” Brett McGurk, US Special Presidential Envoy to the Global Coalition to Defeat IS, also tweeted.
It is not the first time a US helicopter crashed in Iraq. In March, an HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter crashed in Western Iraq, killing seven soldiers.
Editing by Nadia Riva