Search for missing Navy sailor called off

BY newsdesk  January 9, 2014 at 6:21 PM EDT

Photo by U.S. Navy
A Navy MH-53E Sea Dragon helicopter, like the one seen above, crashed off the coast of Virginia Wednesday, leaving one crew member missing. Photo by U.S. Navy

Rescuers have called off the search for a sailor missing after a Navy helicopter crash.

The sailor had been one of five aboard the Navy helicopter MH-53E Sea Dragon that crashed into the ocean near Norfolk, Va. Wednesday during what the Navy said was a “routine training operation.” Four crew members were rescued from the water at the scene of the crash and sent to nearby Sentara Norfolk General Hospital; two later died from injuries.

Using air and space crews and additional assistance from two Navy helicopters, the Coast Guard searched an area of 500 square miles overnight before calling the active search off Thursday afternoon. Coast Guard section commander Capt. John Little told the AP that cold temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean contributed to the decision to end the effort.