News | Army Ceases Search For 5 Missing Soldiers Lost In Black Hawk Crash Last Week

News | Army Ceases Search For 5 Missing Soldiers Lost In Black Hawk Crash Last Week | Frontline Videos

U.S. Coast Guard photo by Air Station Barbers Point


Rest Easy.

On August 15th, 2017, U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters of the 25th Combat Aviation Brigade were performing routine nighttime training missions off the coast of Hawaii. At around 10 p.m. local time, the Coast Guard received a radio call that the Army lost all communications with one of the helicopters. 

The Coast Guard, as well as fire department stationed in Honolulu, send out boat patrols as well as a plane to search for the 5 crew members who were onboard. The entire crew was equipped with life preservers and homing beacons, but no agency received a distress call. Later that day the search and rescue crews located debris of the plane, but could not locate any crewmembers.

After 6 days of searching, the Army officially called off the search effort on August 22nd. Due to powerful ocean currents which pulled out the debris and the length of time put into the search, Rear. Adm. Vincent B. Atkins, commander of the local Coast Guard said, “A decision to suspend searching without finding survivors is extremely difficult given the depth of its impact.”

The Army also released the names of the lost soldiers at this time. Their names were:

  • 1st Lt. Kathryn M. Bailey, 26, of Hope Mills, N.C. 
  • Chief Warrant Officer 3 Brian M. Woeber, 41, of Decatur, Ala. 
  • Chief Warrant Officer 2 Stephen T. Cantrell, 32, of Wichita Falls, Tex.
  • Staff Sgt. Abigail R. Milam, 33, of Jenkins, Ky. 
  • Sgt. Michael L. Nelson, 30, of Antioch, Tenn.

The report below is from the following day the crash occurred. At that time the rescue crews just discovered a debris field and began searching for any crewmembers.

The military is launching an investigation as to what happened. 


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