Minnesota News

Twin Cities airman among 8 killed in Air Force Osprey crash

Military transportation
US soldiers walk past a parked CV-22 Ospreyon April 23 as part of the US-Philippines joint military exercise 'Balikatan."
JAM STA ROSA | AFP via Getty Images

An Air Force officer from the Twin Cities was among the eight airmen killed in a crash in Japan last week.

The Air Force said in a statement Tuesday that the CV-22 Osprey aircraft went down in the ocean near Yakushima Island in southern Japan on Nov. 29. There were no survivors.

Among those aboard was Maj. Jeffrey T. Hoernemann of Andover, Minn. He served as an instructor pilot and training officer. Hoernemann, 32, was stationed at Yokota Air Base near Tokyo.

The Air Force said the crew was “performing a routine training mission” when the crash occurred.

The Osprey can take off vertically and hover like a helicopter. While airborne, its rotors can tilt 90 degrees to enable it to fly as a fixed-wing airplane.

Divers found wreckage from the aircraft over the weekend. As of Tuesday morning, search and recovery crews from the U.S. and Japan had yet to find the remains of two of the airmen.

The others killed in the crash were:

Staff Sgt. Jake Galliher, 24, of Pittsfield, Mass.

Maj. Eric V. Spendlove, 36, of St. George, Utah

Maj. Luke A. Unrath, 34, of Riverside, Calif.

Capt. Terrell K. Brayman, 32, of Pittsford, N.Y.

Tech. Sgt. Zachary E. Lavoy, 33, of Oviedo, Fla.

Staff Sgt. Jake M. Turnage, 25, of Kennesaw, Ga.

Senior Airman Brian K. Johnson, 32, of Reynoldsburg, Ohio