Friday, April 03, 2015

RIP: two dead in March 30th crash of USFS contracted Bell 206L-1

A Bell 206 L-1 Helicopter crashed on Monday afternoon March 30th while working an 800-acre prescribed burn 25 miles west of Biloxi, Mississippi. The crew of the Bell was performing aerial ignition operations on the prescribed fire in the DeSoto National Forest when the crash occurred. The Bell had one pilot and additional crew of two US Forest Service firefighters. Two died and one crew survived. The surviving crew member was flown by a Life Flight Helicopter to a Medical Center in Mobile, Alabama where is currently in serious condition. See Always Remember (includes links to media reports and other information) for more information.

Gone but not forgotten are:

Brandon Ricks, pilot, 40 years old from Blanchard, OK.
Steven W. Cobb, US Forest Service Engineering Technician, 55 years old from Wiggins, MS.

Brandon and Steven, I know that you are loved by your family, friends, and colleagues who miss you and mourn your loss. Please know that many of us who don’t know you join them in mourning your loss.  May you always fly in favorable tail winds. My thoughts and prayers are with your family, friends, colleagues and all who love you.

My thoughts and prayers are with the surviving crew member and his family and friends as he continues to recover from the injuries he sustained in the crash.

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