Soldier Dies At Army Base After Incident Between Two Helicopters

(Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)

Kay Smythe News and Commentary Writer
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An American soldier at Fort Stewart, Georgia, was killed in a helicopter incident Wednesday.

“Capt. James T. Bellew, 26, was found deceased at the site of a helicopter crash involving two HH-60 helicopters at Wright Army Airfield at approximately 2 a.m. on Mar. 30, 2022. The incident is under investigation by Special Agents from the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Division (CID), as is routine policy in any non-combat death of a soldier. A safety investigation team from the U.S. Army Combat Readiness Center is also investigating the incident,” according to a statement from the 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Stewart, published by WJCL.

Bellew entered the Army in 2017 as a medical service officer and became an Aeromedical Evacuation Officer in 2019, according to WJCL. (RELATED: Three US Army Soldiers Killed While Training At Fort Stewart In Georgia)

“The loss of James is an immeasurable tragedy to his family, friends, crew and fellow Soldiers,” Col. Eric Vanek, 3rd Combat Aviation Brigade commander said, according to WJCL. “James was a part of one of the noblest professions imaginable; he dedicated his life to serving our country and did so in a role where he was constantly helping, and saving the lives of others.”

A statement following the crash was released Wednesday on the 3rd Infantry Division’s Facebook page, according to CNN. Specific details regarding the incident were not released, and the soldier’s identity was unavailable until the next of kin were notified, according to the Facebook post.

The Fort Stewart military installation is located roughly 40 miles southwest of Savannah, Georgia, and was settled in 1940 as an Anti-Aircraft Artillery Training Center, according to the Fort’s official website. Originally named “Camp Stewart” for Revolutionary War General Daniel Stewart, the Fort became home to the 3rd Infantry Division in 1996.

An estimated 8,821 people live on Fort Stewart, with an additional 35,000 people living in the neighboring Hinesville, according to the site. Over 22,000 soldiers and more than 40,000 family members are served by the installation.