1 dead following crash of planes

TOKYO (AP) — One of two crew members recovered after two U.S. warplanes collided and crashed off Japan’s coast early Thursday is dead and five others remain missing, the U.S. military said.

The Marine Corps said the other recovered crew member was in fair condition.

Both were in an F/A-18 Hornet fighter jet that collided with a KC-130 Hercules refueling aircraft collided during training at about 2 a.m. after taking off from their base in Iwakuni, near Hiroshima. The five others were in the KC-130.

The Marines said in a statement that the two planes were involved in routine training, including aerial refueling, but that it was still investigating what caused the crash.

President Donald Trump tweeted that his thoughts and prayers are with the Marine Corps crew members involved in the collision. He thanked the U.S. forces in Japan for their “immediate response and rescue efforts” and said “Whatever you need, we are here for you.”

The crash took place 200 miles off the coast, according to the U.S. military. Japanese officials said it occurred closer to the coast, about 60 miles, and that’s where the search and rescue mission found the two crew members.

Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force, which dispatched aircraft and vessels to join in the search operation, said Japanese rescuers found one of the crew from the fighter jet in stable condition.

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