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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) - Three Hampton Roads-based sailors were among the nine killed in a military helicopter crash in southern Afghanistan, said military authorities on Wednesday.
Senior Chief Petty Officer David B., McLendon, 30, of Thomasville, Ga., Petty Officer 2nd Class (SEAL) Adam O. Smith, 26, of Hurland Mo., and Petty Officer 3rd Class (SEAL) Denis C. Miranda, 24, of Toms River, N.J. were among those that perished in the crash. All three were all based at Little Creek.
McLendon was a Navy cryptologic technician assigned to an east coast Naval Special Warfare unit. He entered the Navy in 1998 and was a graduate of Thomas County Central High School in Georgia. During his 12-year Navy career, McLendon served at various Navy commands in Norfolk, Pearl Harbor, and Brunswick, Maine. His fellow service members said they remember McLendon as a consummate Navy professional. McClendon is survived by his wife and parents.
"He loved to go fishing," Kelly Lockman said of her brother, who went by his middle name. Lockman said that when he came home in June, he went with family and friends to Turner Field in Atlanta to see the Braves game. "It was the first time he'd been there," she said. The body was to arrive Wednesdday at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, family members said.
"These men bravely and unselfishly answered the nation's call to defend freedom and protect the nation and its allies from terrorism," said Rear Adm. Winters. "The loss of these brave warriors will only strengthen our resolve in the fight against extremism and terror."
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