Marines killed in training accident

CAMP PENDLETON — Two Marines were killed when a twin-engine, two-seat AH-1W Cobra attack helicopter crashed about 1 p.m. Sept. 19 during a training exercise on Camp Pendleton. The accident set off a fast-moving brush fire on the base.
Capt. Jeffrey Bland and 1st Lt. Thomas Heitman died at the scene. Both Marines were assigned to Marine Light Attack Helicopter Training Squadron 303, Marine Aircraft Group 39, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing at the time of the crash, according to a statement released by Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.
Military officials have not released details of how the crash occurred. The helicopter went down in the southeast corner of the base, near Fallbrook. The blaze burned approximately 120 acres.

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