Lakenheath/Norfolk: Names released of US helicopter crew killed after their aircraft crashed on north Norfolk coast

Capt Sean Ruane, left, and Tech Sgt Dale Mathews, two of the American servicemen killed in the Cley

Capt Sean Ruane, left, and Tech Sgt Dale Mathews, two of the American servicemen killed in the Cley helicopter crash. - Credit: Archant

The four members of a US aircrew from RAF Lakenheath killed in a helicopter crash on the Norfolk coast have been named.

Capt Christopher Stover, of the American servicemen killed in the Cley helicopter crash.

Capt Christopher Stover, of the American servicemen killed in the Cley helicopter crash. - Credit: Archant

The statement containing the names of the three men and one woman was published on RAF Lakenheath’s website last night.

The men were Captain Christopher S Stover, Captain Sean M Ruane and Technical Sergeant Dale E Mathews. The female memeber of the aircrew was Staff Sergeant Afton M Ponce.

They were flying a HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter as part of a training mission but the aircraft crashed for an unknown reason at Cley-next-the-Sea.

Pave Hawks carry a four-person crew – a pilot, co-pilot, and two special mission aviators who are qualified as both gunners and flight engineers.


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On this particular mission Capt Stover and Capt Ruane were the pilots and Tech Sgt Mathews and Staff Sgt Ponce were the special mission aviators.

Colonel Kyle Robinson, 48th Fighter Wing commander, said: “We continue to think of the loved ones who are experiencing such a tragic, sudden loss.

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“The Liberty Wing feels as though it has lost members of its family, and we stand by to support one another and these Airmen’s families during this difficult time.”

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