- The Washington Times - Friday, January 10, 2014

Coast Guard rescuers called off their search for a U.S. sailor who went missing when the helicopter he rode with four other crew members crashed into waters off the Virginia coast.

Two of the crew died in the crash that took place Wednesday, while two others were hospitalized.

Capt. John Little, a section commander with the Coast Guard, said rescuers called off their 30-hour search mid-afternoon on Thursday, The Associated Press reported. Yet, they still remain hopeful of a recovery.

“We’re not actively looking, but we have an on-the-scene presence,” he said, in the AP report.

The U.S. Navy reported late Thursday that the missing crew member was Lt. Sean Christopher Synder, a 39-year-old pilot from Santee, Calif. His family sent out a statement saying he was “a decorated pilot, a man of honor, dedicated husband and father, who is proud and grateful for his privilege to serve his country in the United States Navy,” AP reported.

One of the survivors was released from the hospital and the other could be sent home as early as Friday, AP reported. The survivors have not been identified.

But the sailors who died were Lt. Wesley Van Dorn, 29, of Greensboro, N.C., and Petty Officer 3rd Class Brian Collins, 25, of Truckee, Calif.



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