Takuto Kaneko/Kyodo News via Associated Press

A Marine Corps AH-1 Cobra attack helicopter made an emergency landing Monday on the Japanese island of Okinawa, the Associated Press reports — the second rotary-wing aviation incident for Japan-based Marines since the beginning of the year, and the fourth in a month.

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Navy photo

Just hours before the KC-130 crash that claimed the lives of 15 Marines and a sailor in Mississippi on June 10, the retiring three-star general in charge of Marine Corps aviation published a farewell letter stressing the need to bolster the service’s aviation readiness — and saying the Corps needed more, and better-trained, aircraft maintainers.

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Screenshot via Fox News

On July 10, a KC-130 ferrying Marine Corps personnel and equipment from Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point in North Carolina to Naval Air Facility El Centro in California exploded in mid-air over Mississippi, killing the 15 Marines — including six Marines from Marine Corps Forces, Special Operations Command — and one Navy corpsman on board. According to a Marine Corps public affairs officer, the incident marks the worst crash since a CH-53E Super Stallion crashed in Iraq in 2005, killing 30 Marines and one sailor.

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U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Donald Holbert

Roughly 25 percent of the Marines’ 280 F/A-18 Hornet fighter jets could fly now if needed, the top aviation Marine said Wednesday.

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DoD Photo

The Marine Corps recently took a very unusual step. In a new administrative message it announced that selected aviation captains who have been passed over twice for promotion to major will be allowed to extend their active service for 36 months. Actually “allowed” is a misnomer. In fact, they’re signed up for the extra time unless they opt out.

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