No survivors in Black Hawk helicopter crash that killed two National Guardsmen

 February 16, 2023

Two Tennessee National Guardsmen were killed in a horrific Black Hawk helicopter crash Wednesday afternoon.

There were no survivors from the crash outside of Huntsville, Alabama.

Soldiers killed in helicopter crash

The victims were on a training mission when the helicopter crashed into a highway, the Tennessee National Guard said.

Brig. Gen. Warner Ross said he is "deeply saddened by the loss of two Tennessee National Guardsmen, and our prayers are with their families during this heartbreaking tragedy."

"We ask Tennesseans to join us in supporting their families during this time of unthinkable grief," he added.

Miraculously, no passerby were injured or killed in the 3 p.m. crash, which caused the helicopter to burst into flames. The disaster occurred on Highway 53 near Alabama's border with Tennessee.

Victims identified

The victims were identified Thursday as Chief Warrant Officer 3 Daniel Wadham of Joelton, and Chief Warrant Officer 3 Danny Randolph of Murfreesboro. The men had 15 years and 13 years of service, respectively.

They were assigned to A Company, 1-230th Assault Helicopter Battalion, Nashville’s Berry Field Air National Guard Base. The men were approaching Huntsville Executive Airport "when the aircraft rapidly descended and impacted the ground," the National Guard said.

The National Guard hasn't yet said what caused the crash, which was captured in harrowing video shared on social media.

One of the clips showed the moment of impact from the vantage point of a homeowner's security camera. The helicopter can be seen falling through the sky before a muffled boom is heard, followed by an explosion of black smoke.

Harrowing tragedy

The authorities closed off the area near the crash to traffic and warned residents to be on the lookout for debris.

"Sheriff’s deputies believe crash debris could be scattered across areas near the crash site," the Madison County Sheriff's office said. "If you locate any wreckage, please avoid the area and notify the Madison County Sheriff’s Office so our team of investigators can make contact with you."

Tennessee governor Bill Lee (R) said he and his wife were "deeply saddened by the tragic loss of two Tennessee National Guard members."

"Please join us in lifting their families up in prayer & support during this time of unspeakable grief," he said.

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