LOS ANGELES (AP) — 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.


Family and friends say one of four Marines killed when their helicopter crashed on a training mission in Southern California was a standout in the corps and in life, just as caring as he was tough.

Although the Marines haven't released the names of those killed in Tuesday's crash, family and friends have identified Lance Cpl. Taylor Conrad as among the dead.

Tributes to Conrad, who just became a father, are pouring in on social media, including from the mayor in his hometown of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and his high school football team.

Cpl. Brock Portier, a good friend and fellow Marine, says his "brother" was "the gold standard" in the corps.

Conrad's great aunt, Pam Scoggin of Texas City, Texas, says he loved serving his country.

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