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Black Boxes Recovered from Alaska Army Helicopter Crash Site

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JUNEAU, Alaska — U.S. military investigators have recovered flight data recorders from two Army helicopters that collided last week in a remote area of Alaska’s interior, killing three soldiers and injuring another, the Army said Wednesday.

Two helicopters from the 1st Attack Battalion, 25th Aviation Regiment at Fort Wainwright collided about 50 miles (80 kilometers) east of Healy when they were returning from training on April 27, the Army has said. Healy is about 80 miles (129 kilometers) southwest of Fairbanks.

An investigative team from Fort Novosel, Alabama, went to the crash site Monday, when the flight data recorders, sometimes referred to as black boxes, and other “sensitive items” were recovered, the Army said.

Sensitive items include such things as night vision devices and communications equipment, said John Pennell, a U.S. Army Alaska spokesperson. He said the team continues its work at the crash site.

The Army grounded aviation units on Friday to conduct further training following recent deadly accidents.

The Army has identified those killed in last week’s crash as Chief Warrant Officer 3 Christopher Robert Eramo, 39, of Oneonta, New York; Chief Warrant Officer 2 Kyle D. McKenna, 28, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and Warrant Officer 1 Stewart Duane Wayment, 32, of North Logan, Utah.

A private memorial is scheduled for Thursday at Fort Wainwright, near Fairbanks.

The injured soldier is recuperating at home after being released from the hospital, the Army said. The soldier’s name has not been released.

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