The brave airman who died after falling from a C-130 over the Gulf of Mexico has been identified as Staff Sgt. Cole Condiff, 29, whom his squadron commander described as "a man with deep-rooted beliefs who dedicated himself to God, our freedoms, peace, and his family."
Condiff was a special tactics combat controller assigned to the 23rd Special Tactics Squadron, 24th Special Operations Wing. He went missing no Nov. 5 after landing in the water about four miles south of Hurlburt Field, Florida, during a training jump.
"He was a devoted family man within our squadron, focused on teaching his girls to be adventurous like he was," his squadron commander Lt Col. Steven Cooper said in a news release. "This is a tragic loss to the squadron, the Special Tactics community and our nation. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and teammates at this time."
The Air Force and Navy are continuing efforts to recover Condiff after the Coast Guard suspended its search for him on Nov. 8.
Originally from Dallas, Condiff entered the two-year combat control training program immediately after he enlisted in the Air Force in 2012, according to the 24th Special Operations Wing news release. He went on to deploy to Afghanistan and Africa.
In July 2018, Major League Baseball helped Condiff surprise his pregnant wife and 3-year-old daughter at a Washington Nationals game following his second deployment to Afghanistan.
Condiff was trained as a static-line jumper, military free-fall jumper, air traffic controller, and joint terminal attack controller. His military awards include the Air Force Achievement Medal and an Air Force Commendation Medal with a combat device.
Prior to joining the Air Force, he attended Utah Valley University and served a two-year mission with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Spokane.