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Navy to conduct extensive investigation into cause of E-2D Hawkeye crash

Two aircrew members survived the crash near Chincoteague with non-life-threatening injuries, but a third sailor died.

NORFOLK, Va. — The Navy said it will conduct a thorough review of the deadly E-2D Advanced Hawkeye crash that took place Wednesday night on Virginia's Eastern Shore.

The objective is to learn everything that can be learned in hopes of avoiding another tragedy in the future.

Two aircrew members survived the crash near Chincoteague with non-life-threatening injuries, but a third sailor died.

RELATED: Navy: 2 hurt, 1 killed after E-2D Hawkeye crashes near Chincoteague

It will be critical to complete the Manual of the Judge Advocate General or "JAGMAN" investigation into this crash.

"When we have a mishap and injury and loss of life, it affects the entire military aviation community," said retired Navy Captain Kit Chope, a former commanding officer of Naval Air Station Oceana.

Chope, who flew the A-6E Intruder, F-14 Tomcat, and F/A-18 Super Hornet, has been involved in numerous JAGMAN investigations. He said they are vital for the future safety of aviators and aircrew members.

"It is a brotherhood and a sisterhood that is very unforgiving," he said. "And we all recognize that. So I think it is an obligation for the military aviation community to come together and understand what happened so it won't happen again."

Chope said this investigation should be aided by the fact that there were two survivors who can testify about their experiences.

"And certainly if it's a human facet -- somebody who was involved in the mishap or someone who witnessed the mishap -- those are invaluable," he said. "Obviously, you want to get that investigation going fairly quickly because peoples' memory tends to fade."

RELATED: Military working to turn around troubling, sometimes deadly training mishaps

These investigations take four to six months to complete. But it is possible, with the two survivors, that this probe could be finished more quickly.

The E-2D Advanced Hawkeye is a relatively new aircraft, only reaching initial operational capability in 2014.

It is a tactical airborne early warning airplane designed to operate from aircraft carriers.

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