4 Marines killed in California crash identified

LOS ANGELES  — Military officials have identified the Marines killed when their helicopter crashed on a training mission in the California desert as four men in their 20s and 30s from the South and the Midwest.

Those killed were identified Thursday as 28-year-old Capt. Samuel Schultz of Huntington Valley, Pennsylvania; 27-year-old 1st Lt. Samuel Phillips of Pinehurst, North Carolina; 33-year-old Gunnery Sgt. Richard Holley of Dayton, Ohio; and 24-year-old Lance Cpl. Taylor Conrad of Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

The Marines were with the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing’s 465th squadron out of the Miramar air station in San Diego.

Their CH-53E Super Stallion crashed Tuesday in the desert outside El Centro, near the U.S.-Mexico border.

Col. Craig Leflore, a commanding officer, says “these ‘warhorse’ Marines brought joy and laughter to so many around them,” and they will never be forgotten.