BOSTON (CBS/AP) – Two of six U.S. airmen who were killed Thursday during an aircraft crash in Afghanistan were deployed from Hanscom Air Force Base, officials said on Friday.
The six died when a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft crashed just after taking off from the Jalalabad Airfield.
Two had been deployed from Hanscom and four were deployed from Dyess Air Force Base in Texas.
Five civilian passengers on the plane also died, as did some people on the ground.
The names of the six airmen have not yet been released.
“This is a devastating day for our Air Force and for Hanscom Air Force Base,” said Col. Michael Vogel, Hanscom base commander. “Our hearts are heavy with sorrow as we grieve with and for the families of these brave Airmen.”
The two Hanscom airmen were serving as members of the 66th Security Forces Squadron and had been deployed to the 455th Air Expeditionary Wing in Afghanistan.
Secretary of Defense Ash Carter released a statement Friday afternoon on the death of the six U.S. airmen.
I was saddened to hear about the tragic C-130 crash which took the lives of six U.S. airmen and five civilian contractors in Jalalabad, Afghanistan. While we are still trying to determine exactly what happened, this is a reminder of the risks that our men and women face serving their country in remote places all over the world. Let us not forget the importance of their service, and the critical mission they died supporting. My thoughts and prayers are with their families during this difficult time. I also want to express my condolences to the families of the Afghans killed in this tragedy. We remain committed with our coalition partners to helping the people of Afghanistan build a secure and peaceful country.
The crash happened shortly after midnight Thursday at Jalalabad air field, 80 miles from Kabul.
The Taliban claimed that it shot down the plane, but American military officials said that was unlikely.
WBZ News Radio 1030’s Lana Jones reports
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