Hornet, Marine Pilot Missing

Story Number: NNS040627-01Release Date: 6/27/2004 8:08:00 PM
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From USS Harry S. Truman Public Affairs

ABOARD USS HARRY S. TRUMAN (NNS) -- A U.S. Marine Corps pilot and F/A-18 Hornet aircraft operating from USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) were reported missing June 27. The missing pilot has been identified as Capt. Franklin R. Hooks, II, 32, of Pasco, Fla.

Aircraft wreckage has been recovered approximately 60 miles south of the Azores in the eastern Atlantic Ocean. Harry S. Truman and its embarked aircraft have covered more than 200 square miles of water in search of the pilot. Search and rescue efforts are continuing.

The pilot was conducting a routine training exercise when the incident occurred. The aircraft was reported missing at 12:30 a.m. Zulu June 27. The plane is one of 11 aircraft assigned to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 115 "Silver Eagles" operating from Harry S. Truman. The squadron is based out of Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C., and is one of eight squadrons that make up Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 3.

The Harry S. Truman Strike Group is currently operating in the eastern Atlantic Ocean as part of Summer Pulse 04, the Navy's first exercise of its new operational construct, the Fleet Response Plan.

The cause of the incident is under investigation.

For related news, visit the USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) Navy NewsStand page at www.news.navy.mil/local/cvn75.

An F/A-18 Hornet launches from one of the four steam-powered catapults aboard USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75).
Official U.S. Navy file photo of an F/A-18 Hornet assigned to Marine Strike Fighter Squadron (VMFA) 115 aboard USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75).
April 16, 2004
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