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Searched Called Off For Six Missing U.S. Marines

August 31, 1986

OSLO, Norway (AP) _ The U.S. Navy called off its search for six U.S. Marines missing and presumed dead in a helicopter crash off Norway during a NATO exercise, an Allied spokesman said Sunday.

The missing men were among eight Marines killed when a Marine CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter carrying 21 people crashed into the Atlantic Ocean upon takeoff from the assault vessel USS Saipan on Friday, U.S. military officials said.

Marine Corps spokesman Capt. Scott Campbell told The Associated Press in a telephone interview Saturday from Norfolk, Va., that two bodies were found and the six missing Marines were presumed dead.

″We’ve been informed by the U.S. Navy that its search was called off after darkness Saturday night and will not be resumed,″ said Norwegian Major Odd Solem, press spokesman at the information center for the NATO maneuvers in Norway.

″All boats sailing in the accident area 60 miles off the town of Bodoe have been asked to maintain a good look-out,″ he said.

Thirteen people, including two who were seriously injured, were plucked from the sea by other helicopters and rescue boats, officials said Saturday.

The accident occurred at the start of a three-week NATO maritime exercise, which continued as scheduled despite the crash.

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