East Hawaii News

Marines Helicopter Squadron Leader Fired Days Before Hawai’i Crash

February 1, 2016, 1:10 PM HST
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Lieutenant Colonel Edward Pavelka, the former commanding officer of Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 463. Marine Corps. photo.

Lieutenant Colonel Edward Pavelka, the former commanding officer of Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 463. Marine Corps. photo.

Just days before last month’s downing of two United States Marine Corps. CH-53E helicopters off the north shore of Oahu, the commander of the helicopter squadron was fired.

On Monday, KITV reported that a Marine spokesman said that Brigadier General Russell Sanborn, commander of the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, lost confidence in the ability of Lieutenant Colonel Edward Pavelka to lead Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 463, thus firing him.

No additional information was available as a result of an ongoing investigation into the helicopter crash incident.

Pavelka was relieved of his duties on Jan. 11 and replace by Lieutenant Colonel Eric Purcell, according to reports from Marine Corps. Times.

All 12 Marine aboard the aircrafts were killed in the crash.

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