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A Navy aircraft has reportedly crashed in the Philippine Sea while en route to the USS Ronald Reagan.

A Navy aircraft has reportedly crashed in the Philippine Sea while en route to the USS Ronald Reagan. (Darien Wiegel/U.S. Navy)

A Navy aircraft has reportedly crashed in the Philippine Sea while en route to the USS Ronald Reagan.

A Navy aircraft has reportedly crashed in the Philippine Sea while en route to the USS Ronald Reagan. (Darien Wiegel/U.S. Navy)

The Navy's only forward-deployed aircraft carrier, the USS Ronald Reagan, transits waters near the Korean Peninsula in 2016.

The Navy's only forward-deployed aircraft carrier, the USS Ronald Reagan, transits waters near the Korean Peninsula in 2016. (Nathan Burke/U.S. Navy photo)

YOKOSUKA NAVAL BASE, Japan — Three people were missing Wednesday after a Navy aircraft went down in the Philippine Sea while en route to the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan.

A C-2A Greyhound carrying 11 crew members and passengers crashed in waters southeast of Okinawa at approximately 2:45 p.m., a Navy statement said. Search-and-rescue operations involving U.S. and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Forces ships and aircraft are underway.

Eight people have been rescued so far and are in good condition aboard the Ronald Reagan, the Navy said.

The Greyhound was carrying passengers and cargo from Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni to the carrier at the time of the crash. It is assigned to Carrier Air Wing 5, the aviation component of the Ronald Reagan strike group.

The carrier was conducting a training exercise with the JMSDF at the time of the accident, the Navy said. The crash’s cause is unknown.

A family assistance center has been set up at Yokosuka Naval Base. Families who live off base in Japan can call 0468-16-1728. Those in the United States can call +81-468-16-1728, while on-base families can dial 315-243-1728 (DSN).

hlavac.tyler@stripes.com

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