The body of a U.S. Marine who ejected from his F/A-18 Hornet during a training mission about 120 miles southeast of Iwakuni, Japan, has been found, according to a press release from the Marine Corp.
“U.S. Marine Corps pilot Capt. James Frederick piloted the F/A-18C+ that went down off the coast of Iwakuni, Japan,” the release stated. “The Japanese Ministry of Defense confirmed to local media Thursday that a Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force ship had recovered Frederick. He is pronounced deceased. We will provide more releasable information after the 24-hour window. Our deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of the pilot. The cause of the crash is still unknown.”
A search-and-rescue mission was immediately launched by the Marines and Japanese Self-Defense Forces after the pilot ejected around 6:40 p.m. local time. Three Japanese ships and several aircraft joined the search as well as the USS Montford and USS Wilbur Curtis before Frederick was found at approximately 1 a.m. Thursday.