Decatur soldier among 5 missing in Black Hawk crash off Hawaii


A ​41​-year-old ​Decatur man is among five soldiers who have been missing since ​an Army ​UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crashed Aug. 15 in the waters off northwest Oahu​​.

Army Chief Warrant Officer Brian Woeber, ​41​ of​ ​Decatur, was one of five to be lost after the crash.

The Army and Coast Guard ​had been searching the Hawaiian waters f​or nearly a week​, when they suspended their ​active search for ​the missing soldiers​.

“Suspension of a search-and-rescue case without resolution is a very, very difficult decision, and it weighs heavily, particularly on the hearts of the Coast Guard,” Rear Adm. Vincent B. Atkins, commander of Coast Guard 14th District, told reporters.

The decision to suspend the search was based on “extensive review of the case, including our search efforts, all available data and weather conditions,” Atkins explained.

The helicopter was participating in a night exercise. It is the third crash of a military aircraft in recent months.

The full list of missing soldiers include:

  1. 1st Lt. Kathryn M. Bailey, 26, of Hope Mills, N.C. She is an aviation officer.
  2. Chief Warrant Officer 3 Brian M. Woeber, 41, of Decatur, Ala. He is a pilot.
  3. Chief Warrant Officer 2 Stephen T. Cantrell, 32, of Wichita Falls, Tex. He is a pilot.
  4. Staff Sgt. Abigail R. Milam, 33, of Jenkins, Ky. She is a helicopter crew chief.
  5. Sgt. Michael L. Nelson, 30, of Antioch, Tenn. He is a helicopter crew chief.

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