A Coast Guard helicopter with five persons aboard crashed into the sea while trying to hoist an injured man from a Japanese fishing boat, killing at least three persons, the Coast Guard said. One man aboard the helicopter was missing, and a fifth man was rescued by the Japanese vessel, the Kaisei Maru No. 18. The helicopter was about to hoist up Suzuke Masaji, 47, who had suffered a head injury, "when something happened and the helicopter went down," said Seaman Paul Powers of the Coast Guard information office here. Powers said first reports indicated the man rescued by the crew of the Japanese vessel was in good condition. He said the vessel also recovered three bodies.
The Coast Guard identified those known dead as the pilot, Lt. Cmdr. James Stiles, 33, hometown unknown, Aviation Electronics Technician 2nd Class John Tait, 22, of Silver Spring, Md., and Canadian Forces Capt. George Burge, 38, of Fredericton, New Brunswick. Burge, the copilot, was stationed with the Coast Guard in an exchabge program with the Canaidan government.
Missing was Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Bruce Kaehler, 27, of Fort Collins, Colo. The rescued Coast Guardman was identified as Aviation Machinist Mate 2nd Class Mark Torr, 20, or Rochester, N.H.