Governor Directs Flags to Half-Staff on Monday

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today directed that flags on all state government buildings be flown at half-staff on Monday, July 17 to honor the 16 members of the armed services killed when an aircraft assigned to Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 452 crashed in Mississippi on July 10.

The Marine Corps Reserve unit is based at Stewart Air National Guard Base in Newburgh, and nine of the Marine Reservists on board were members of VMGR-452.

“On behalf of all New Yorkers, I extend my deepest condolences to the families of the 15 Marines and the Navy sailor who tragically died in a military plane crash earlier this week in Mississippi,” said Governor Cuomo. “These service members, many of whom were based out of Stewart Air National Guard Base, answered the call to serve this nation and defend its ideals. I share in the pain and the heartbreak caused by the deaths of these brave service members and urge everyone to keep them and their loved ones in your prayers during this difficult and trying time.”

Members of VMGR-452 killed in the crash were:

  • Major Caine M. Goyette
  • Capt. Sean Elliot
  • Gunnery Sgt. Mark A. Hopkins
  • Gunnery Sgt. Brendan C. Johnson
  • Staff Sgt. Joshua M. Snowden
  • Sgt. Julian M. Kevianne
  • Sgt. Owen J. Lennon
  • Corporal Daniel I. Baldassare
  • Corporal Collin J. Schaaff

Six Marines and a Navy Petty Officer assigned to the 2nd Raider Battalion, Special Operations Command, were also killed in the crash.