Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jonah D. McClellan

Remember Our Heroes

Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jonah D. McClellan, 26, of St. Louis Park, Minn.;

CWO2 Jonah D. McClellan was assigned to the 5th Battalion, 101st Combat Aviation Brigade, 101st Airborne division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky.; died Sept. 21, 2010 in a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crash during combat operations in Zabul province, Afghanistan. Also killed in the crash were: Army Maj. Robert F. Baldwin, Army Sgt. Marvin R. Calhoun Jr., Lt. (SEAL) Brendan J. Looney, Senior Chief Cryptologic Technician (Collection) David B. McLendon, Navy Special Warfare Operator 3rd Class (SEAL) Denis C. Miranda, Army Staff Sgt. Joshua D. Powell, Navy Special Warfare Operator 2nd Class (SEAL) Adam O. Smith, and Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Matthew G. Wagstaff.

Father says Wash. soldier among helo victims
The Associated Press

VANCOUVER, Wash. — A father says a Clark County, Wash., soldier is among the victims of a helicopter crash in southern Afghanistan that killed nine service members.

Rod McClellan tells The Columbian that 26-year-old Army Chief Warrant Officer Jonah McClellan is among the dead. The elder McClellan says his son was a Blackhawk helicopter pilot with the 101st Airborne and grew up northeast of Battle Ground.

Jonah McClellan leaves behind his wife, Nina, and their three small children.

His father says Jonah McClellan graduated from Battle Ground's Summit View High School in 2002 and joined the Army in August 2003 so he could learn to fly helicopters. Rod McClellan says his son went to Afghanistan in March for his second one-year tour.

Army Chief Warrant Officer Jonah D. McClellan was with the 101st Airborne Division based at Fort Campbell, Ky.

It wasn't clear whether he was piloting the helicopter at the time of the crash, said his father, Rob McClellan, of Battle Ground. "He was at the controls, whether as a co-pilot or pilot, I don't know," McClellan said. "We got very little more information from the Army."

His son had been involved in a variety of missions, including medical recovery, transporting troops and dropping ammunition.

"I think what he told us was filtered. He was very, very excited about everything about it -- as far as just getting behind that stick, every time was like the first time," McClellan said. "Anything tough he didn't tell us -- close calls or being fired on, he never told us that stuff."

Jonah McClellan leaves behind his wife, Nina, and three small children. Funeral plans are pending.

He was a 2002 graduate of Summit View High School, an alternative school with about 300 students, said Gregg Herrington, a spokesman for the Battle Ground School District.

Many of the teachers and staff who worked at the school then have left, but at least one remembered McClellan as quiet and polite, Herrington said.

Julia Scott, a school nurse now deployed as an Air Force medevac nurse in Kandahar, helped unload the dead and injured from Tuesday's helicopter crash, Herrington said. "It's just flabbergasting," he said. "At the time she did not know that a former student from the high school where she worked as a nurse was involved until later."

Military officials wouldn't disclose the helicopter's mission, and the cause of the crash wasn't immediately clear. Five members of the 101st Airborne were among the troops killed, they said.

The five were all assigned to the 101st Combat Aviation Brigade and their families have been notified, said Fort Campbell spokesman Rick Rzepka. The brigade started its deployment in March.

Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jonah D. McClellan was killed in action on 9/21/10.

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