ACCOMACK COUNTY, Va. (WAVY) — U.S. Navy officials have identified the service member killed in Wednesday night’s E2-D Hawkeye crash north of Chincoteague Island in Accomack County.
According to the Navy, Lt. Hyrum Hanlon was killed when an E-2D Advanced Hawkeye crashed Wednesday night during a routine exercise.
“It takes a courageous and patriotic person to devote their life to the selflessness of serving in the armed forces,” said Cmdr. Martin Fentress Jr., Commanding Officer of VAW-120 “Hyrum embodied those characteristics and will be truly missed by his family and the Hawkeye community. We sincerely appreciate the public respecting the family’s privacy during this difficult time as they mourn his loss.”
Hanlon graduated from Arizona State University and joined the Navy in May 2017. He reported to the Norfolk-based VAW-120 in January 2021.
Lt. Cmdr. Rob Myers, a public affairs officer with Naval Air Force Atlantic, said the plane was doing a routine exercise when it went down around 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday.
Three people were onboard the E2-D Hawkeye when it crashed. Two crew members have injuries that aren’t considered life-threatening.
The E2-D Hawkeye is a prop-based early warning aircraft that can operate off aircraft carriers.
They were rescued by Maryland State Police and transported to Wallops Island for treatment.
The Worcester County Fire Department Dive Team found Hanlon deceased in the aircraft.
“This is a tremendous loss for both our squadron and for the family and friends of our fallen service member,” said Cmdr. Martin Fentress Jr., Commanding Officer of VAW-120. “We are deeply saddened by this tragic loss and are committed to determining the cause of this incident.”
The plane is based out of Naval Station Norfolk and assigned to an East Coast Airborne Command and Control Squadron.
Officials add that the aircraft’s fuel tanks remain intact and are no concern for public health.
The investigation is ongoing.