Airmen killed in C-130 crash from Dyess, Hanscom

FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. (AFNS) -- The six Airmen who died in a C-130J Super Hercules crash in Afghanistan Oct. 2 were assigned to units at Dyess and Hanscom Air Force Bases, according to officials at both bases.

Four Airmen assigned to the 317th Airlift Group at Dyess AFB, Texas, died when the aircraft crashed during initial takeoff from Jalalabad Airfield, Afghanistan, at 12:19 a.m. local time. They included two pilots and two loadmasters.

The other two Airmen were from Hanscom's 66th Security Forces Squadron in Massachusetts. Members of the 66th SFS routinely deploy to assist with security operations around the globe.

All of the Airmen were assigned to the 455th Air Expeditionary Wing.

Five civilians also died in the crash.

The names of the deceased are being withheld until 24 hours after the next of kin have been notified, in accordance with Defense Department policy.

"This is a devastating day for our Air Force and for Hanscom Air Force Base," said Col. Michael A. Vogel, the 66th Air Base Group commander. "Our hearts are heavy with sorrow as we grieve with and for the families of these brave Airmen."

Dyess leaders also expressed their condolences.

"The death of these Airmen, who died in service to our country, is a profound loss," said Col. Michael Bob Starr, the 7th Bomb Wing commander. "The sadness and shock of this tragedy can be felt across the entire Dyess community, and our hearts and prayers go out to our brothers and sisters in the 317th (Airlift Group). We are extending every available resource to comfort and care for the family and friends of our fallen heroes."

"This is a deeply emotional time for everyone in the 317th Airlift Group," said Col. Stephen Hodge, 317th AG commander. "The friendship and camaraderie in the (C-130) community, especially among our Dyess and Abilene friends is unlike any other. These Airmen and their loved ones are our family and we will continue to take care of them."

The cause of the accident is currently under investigation by officials in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility.

(Editor's note: Hanscom AFB's 66th Air Base Group Public Affairs office and Dyess AFB's 7th Bomb Wing Public Affairs office contributed to this article.)