KOCHI, JAPAN – Two US military aircraft collided during a refueling off the coast of Japan resulting in the loss of five servicemen. One of them, Lt. Col. Kevin Herrmann was from New Bern.
Below are the names of the deceased:
- Lt. Col. Kevin R. Herrmann, 38, of New Bern, North Carolina
- Maj. James M. Brophy, 36, of Staatsburg, New York
- Staff Sgt. Maximo A. Flores, 27, of Surprise, Arizona
- Cpl. Daniel E. Baker, 21, of Tremont, Illinois
- Cpl. William C. Ross, 21, of Hendersonville, Tennessee
The deceased were assigned to Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 152 (VMGR-152). The mishap happened between a KC-130 refueling tanker and an F/A-18 fighter jet on Dec. 6. off the coast of Kochi, Japan.
There were a total of seven men onboard both aircrafts. Two of the men were recovered, but only one survived.
“It is with heavy hearts that we announce the names of our fallen Marines,” said U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. Mitchell T. Maury, commanding officer of VMGR-152. “They were exceptional aviators, Marines and friends whom will be eternally missed. Our thoughts and prayers remain with their families and loved ones at this extremely difficult time.”
Lt. Col. Kevin R. Herrmann served 16 years in the Marine Corps. He is survived by his wife and three daughters, ages 12,10 and 7. Lt. Col Herrmann’s wife and three daughters lived with him in Japan. He was promoted to the rank of Lt. Col. posthumously. Family and friends family and friends held a candlelight vigil for him Saturday night. Lt. Col. Herrmann was supposed to be visiting family in Virginia on Monday.”
Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of these men. May God rest their souls.