Camp Pendleton Marines honor copter crash victims - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Camp Pendleton Marines honor copter crash victims

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CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. (AP) - About 300 people gathered at Camp Pendleton's chapel to honor two Marines who were killed in a collision with a Coast Guard airplane off the San Diego coast.

Four Cobra helicopters flew in formation in clear skies after Thursday's memorial service. One broke off - an exercise to pay tribute to the fallen Marines.

Marines spokeswoman Lt. Cassandra Gesecky says the memorial was attended by the families of both victims, Maj. Samuel Leigh of Belgrade, Maine, and 1st Lt. Thomas Claiborne of Parker, Colo.

They died on a training exercise Oct. 29 when their AH-1W Super Cobra helicopter collided with a Coast Guard C-130 plane on a mission to rescue a missing boater about 50 miles offshore. Seven

Coast Guard members also died.

The cause of the crash is under investigation.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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