First victim of CAF helicopter crash identified

A victim has been identified from the Canadian helicopter crash, a CH-148 Cyclone that disappeared over the Ionian Sea, according to CTV News.
Quinn Patrick Montreal, QC

A victim has been identified from the Canadian helicopter crash, a CH-148 Cyclone that disappeared over the Ionian Sea, according to CTV News. On Wednesday, the helicopter went down during a NATO training exercise.

Abbigail Cowbrough is the first victim to be identified, according to Facebook posts from her father and her church.

“I am broken and gutted,” wrote her father in a Facebook post. “There are no words. You made me forever proud. I will love you always, and miss you in every moment. You are the bright light in my life taken far too soon.”

“Our church family has lost a wonderful woman,” wrote the Regal Heights Baptist Church in Dartmouth, N.S. in a Facebook post. “Our prayers are with her family, and all those who have lost a loved one in this tragic accident.”

Our church family has lost a wonderful woman. We are heartbroken to share that Abbigail Cowbrough, who was on board the...

Posted by Regal Heights Baptist Church on Thursday, April 30, 2020

The helicopter was performing an allied exercise over the Ionian Sea when it lost contact, according to the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF). So far, the CAF hasn't released the details of how many people were on board at the time however a cyclone helicopter would generally carry four crew members. Two of which are pilots, a tactical operator and a sensor operator. Typically there is room for extra passengers as well.

The CAF did confirm that they have contacted each of the victims' primary family members. Shane Cowbrough confirmed that his daughter Abbigail, was one of the victims on Thursday morning.

Her church also posted two photos of Abbigail Cowbrough. One of which shows her playing the bagpipes in Dartmouth, at a Remembrance Day ceremony. The second photo shows Abbigail Cowbrough aboard the HMCS Fredericton. That photo was given to the church to let them know where she was staying during quarantine.

Greece’s state broadcaster, ERT, initially reported one body has been discovered and that five others were missing. The broadcaster also said that the helicopter went down somewhere between Italy and Greece.

Greek Prime Minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, gave his condolences about the tragedy, “I express my grief over the crash of the Canadian helicopter in the Ionian Sea last night,” he said on Thursday in parliament.

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