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Marine injured in chopper ‘hard landing’ OK

By Staff | Apr 19, 2013

A U.S. Marine from Cape Coral who is serving overseas was injured earlier this week during regular helicopter operations, according to officials.

The United States Forces Korea at the Yongsan Garrison in Seoul, South Korea, reported on Tuesday that a Marine CH-53E Super Stallion executed a hard landing near Jipo-ri Range while conducting routine flight operations.A total of 21 personnel were on board the helicopter, including five crew members. All were transported to the 121 Hospital in Yongsan, South Korea.

Cpl. Allen Chandler, of the Cape, was among those injured in the landing.

“Allen Chandler was involved in the incident that occurred on Tuesday,” an official stated Wednesday. “Cpl. Chandler is attached to the 31st MEU.”

The 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit is stationed in Okinawa, Japan.

As of Wednesday, eight people remained hospitalized in stable condition, including Chandler. The others have since been treated and released.

“He (Chandler) has non-life threatening injuries,” the official said.

Of the eight still hospitalized, one person was transferred to St. Mary’s Hospital Hospital in Seoul, South Korea, for additional treatment.

“A comprehensive investigation will take place to determine the facts and circumstances surrounding this incident,” officials wrote in a statement.

The routine flight operations were in support of exercise Ssang Yong, a Korean Marine Exchange program and part of the Foal Eagle exercise.

“Safety is our number one priority when operating our aircraft, to include both the safety of our aircrew, passengers and the communities where we train and operate,” officials wrote in the statement released on Tuesday.

Chandler attended Ida S. Baker High School and was a JROTC cadet.

In 2008, his contributions to the program were recognized by the American Legion.