New York

Remains of 3 soldiers recovered after National Guard helicopter crash in New York

Victoria E. Freile, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
Published 12:20 p.m. ET Jan. 21, 2021 | Updated 1:17 p.m. ET Jan. 21, 2021


Three National Guard members on a training flight were killed Wednesday when their helicopter crashed in a farmer’s field in western New York. The UH-60 Black Hawk medical evacuation helicopter went down during a training flight. (Jan. 21)

AP Domestic

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – The remains of three National Guard members killed Wednesday night in a military helicopter crash were removed from the site Thursday morning and transported to a medical examiner’s office.

A New York Army National Guard UH-60 medical evacuation helicopter crashed on a routine training mission after 6:30 p.m. EST Wednesday in a field in Mendon.

The helicopter, a Black Hawk, was based at the Army Aviation Support Facility at Greater Rochester International Airport.

Two multi-vehicle motorcades escorted the deceased soldiers through several Monroe County communities Thursday. Sheriff’s spokeswoman Amy Young said the first procession carried two soldiers and the second departed Mendon with the body of the third soldier about 90 minutes later.

According to preliminary 911 reports, “there were calls of sputtering sounds of an engine and that the aircraft was flying very low, more low than normal,” Monroe County Sheriff Todd Baxter said.

Shortly after the calls, there were reports of a crash.

The helicopter crashed into a field. It did not appear that any of the houses nearby were damaged.

Mendon Fire Chief Bill Kessler said the helicopter was on fire when first responders arrived.  

Baxter said authorities contacted the control tower at the Greater Rochester International Airport but had not reviewed whether those on board the helicopter were communicating with anyone in the tower at the time of the crash. 

The helicopter’s flight path was not imme

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