A U.S. military helicopter crashed Thursday in western Iraq, killing all seven service members on board, the Pentagon said Friday.
The aircraft, an HH-60 Pave Hawk, crashed near the town of Qaim the country’s Anbar province.
According to the U.S. Air Force, the HH-60 is used mainly for "day or night personnel recovery operations into hostile environments to recover isolated personnel during war.”
"This tragedy reminds us of the risks our men and women face every day in service of our nations. We are thinking of the loved ones of these service members today," said U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Jonathan P. Braga, who oversees operations against ISIS in Iraq and Syria, reports the Associated Press.
The helicopter was used by the Air Force for combat search and rescue, and was in transit from one location to another when it went down Thursday afternoon …
The Pentagon said an accompanying U.S. helicopter immediately reported the crash and a quick-reaction force comprised of Iraqi security forces and Coalition members secured the scene. (AP)
President Trump responded to the news on Twitter early Friday morning, writing: “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families and loved ones of the brave troops lost in the helicopter crash on the Iraq-Syria border yesterday. Their sacrifice in service to our country will never be forgotten.”
Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families and loved ones of the brave troops lost in the helicopter crash on the Iraq-Syria border yesterday. Their sacrifice in service to our country will never be forgotten.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 16, 2018
The names of the fallen service members will be released when their next of kin have been notified.