A U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter lands on Honor Field at Fort Polk, Louisiana, Oct. 25, 2018.

A U.S. Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter lands on Honor Field at Fort Polk, Louisiana, Oct. 25, 2018. (Ashley M. Morris/U.S. Army)

One soldier died and three others were injured following an Army helicopter crash early Thursday morning in the training area at Fort Polk, La., according to base officials.

The crash occurred just after midnight as a four-person crew in a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter from 1st Battalion, 5th Aviation Regiment, were conducting a medical evacuation mission of a soldier at the base’s Joint Readiness Training Center, said Kim Reischling, a spokeswoman for Fort Polk. The regiment is based at Fort Polk.

The helicopter crashed in route to the soldier who was in need of medical transport. The soldier was not involved in the crash, she said.

Emergency services responded and the three injured crewmembers now are in stable condition. One was taken to Bayne-Jones Army Community Hospital on base and the other two were taken to Rapides Regional Medical Center in Alexandria, La., Reischling said.

Names will not be released until notification of the next of kin is complete, according to the release.

The accident is under investigation by the Army Combat Readiness Center.

Fort Polk is in central Louisiana and has about 8,000 active-duty personnel. It also has an average daily rotational population of about 5,700 primarily through the Joint Readiness Training Center, which accommodates large-scale exercises for brigade combat teams on a rotational basis.

Third Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division of Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, is the unit now training at Fort Polk, according to the training center’s social media account.

thayer.rose@stripes.comTwitter: @Rose_Lori

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Rose L. Thayer is based in Austin, Texas, and she has been covering the western region of the continental U.S. for Stars and Stripes since 2018. Before that she was a reporter for Killeen Daily Herald and a freelance journalist for publications including The Alcalde, Texas Highways and the Austin American-Statesman. She is the spouse of an Army veteran and a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in journalism. Her awards include a 2021 Society of Professional Journalists Washington Dateline Award and an Honorable Mention from the Military Reporters and Editors Association for her coverage of crime at Fort Hood.

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