Capt. Terrell Brayman, 32, of Pittsford, N.Y., was a CV-22 pilot and flight commander.

Capt. Terrell Brayman, 32, of Pittsford, N.Y., was a CV-22 pilot and flight commander. (U.S. Air Force)

One of the eight airmen who perished when a CV-22B Osprey fell into the sea off southwestern Japan in late November has been posthumously promoted to major.

Capt. Terrell “Terry” K. Brayman, 32, of Pittsford, N.Y, will be promoted effective Friday, Air Force Special Operations Command said in a news release Wednesday.

Brayman was an Osprey pilot and flight commander assigned to the 21st Special Operations Squadron, 353rd Special Operations Wing, at Yokota Air Base in western Tokyo.

“Major Brayman’s legacy will forever endure in the hearts and minds of those who served alongside him, as his commitment to his country will continue to inspire current and future generations of Air Commandos,” Lt. Gen. Tony Bauernfeind, head of Air Force Special Operations Command, said in the release.

Seven of the eight airmen aboard the Osprey — call sign Gundam 22 — have been recovered since the tiltrotor crashed Nov. 29 off Yakushima, an island in Kagoshima prefecture.

People at Yokota silently lined the street leading to the main gate to pay their respects once Wednesday and twice Thursday as crew members’ remains were moved via hearse to a Tokyo airport for their final trip home.

Brayman’s remains were recovered Dec. 5. Maj. Eric Spendlove, 36, of St. George, Utah, remains missing.

The other airmen aboard the Osprey were Maj. Jeffrey Hoernemann, 32, of Andover, Minn.; Maj. Luke Unrath, 34, of Riverside, Calif.; Tech Sgt. Zachary Lavoy, 33, of Oviedo, Fla.; Staff Sgt. Jake Turnage, 25, of Kennesaw, Ga.; Senior Airman Brian Johnson, 32, of Reynoldsburg, Ohio; and Staff Sgt. Jake Galliher, 24, of Pittsfield, Mass.

Rep. Joe Morelle, D-N.Y., remembered Brayman’s service Wednesday in a speech on the House floor.

“It is with deep sorrow I rise to acknowledge the loss of U.S. Air Force Major-select Terrell K. Brayman of Pittsford, N.Y.,” he said.

Brayman, who grew up in Rochester, N.Y., died less than a month away from his 33rd birthday, Morelle added. Those closest to him described the airman as “hardworking and hilarious,” the congressman said.

Brayman earned his Air Force commission through the ROTC program at Ohio State University, Morelle said.

“He went on to serve with great distinction, demonstrating commitment to a cause greater than himself. For that, our community and nation will be forever grateful,” Morelle said. “My heartfelt condolences go out to his family and all who knew him. I hope they take comfort in knowing Major-select Brayman’s profound sense of duty, patriotism and dedication to our country will forever remain his legacy.”

A preliminary investigation indicated that an equipment failure, rather than human error, likely caused the crash, Air Force Special Operations Command said Dec. 6.

“The AFSOC community continues to stand with the families, friends, and teammates affected by this devastating loss,” Bauernfeind said in Wednesday’s release.

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Jonathan Snyder is a reporter at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan. Most of his career was spent as an aerial combat photojournalist with the 3rd Combat Camera Squadron at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. He is also a Syracuse Military Photojournalism Program and Eddie Adams Workshop alumnus.

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