The 16 service-members killed in a military plane crash earlier this week in Mississippi include 15 Marines from around the country and a Navy sailor from Indiana who was part of an elite Marine Raider battalion at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.
Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant said the final set of remains was recovered Thursday from a farm field where the KC-130 crashed Monday. Most of the remains have since been flown to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, where military officials say they will be processed by Air Force mortuary personnel and then released to their grieving families.
Navy Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Ryan Lohrey was a high school football standout in Indiana who had gotten married weeks before the crash.
His father, Michael Lohrey, told The Herald Bulletin newspaper that his son enlisted in the Navy after high school and survived two tours overseas in Iraq and Afghanistan, making his death on the way to training all the more tragic.
“I never would have expected this to happen,” he said.
Lohrey said his son, who had two children of his own, wanted to use his skills as a medic to eventually pursue a career in nursing. The younger Lohrey, stationed at Lejeune was married in early June.
A high school football and golf teammate, Chris Parrish, told the newspaper the Navy corpsman had a fearless streak when it came to BMX biking, skateboarding and roller-blading.
“He wasn’t scared of anything,” Parrish said. “That’s probably why he was so good in the Navy.”
Indiana’s governor joined a congressman and senator in offering condolences.
“Words cannot express the depth of sorrow I feel for his wife and two young children, especially,” Gov. Eric Holcomb said.