US F-15 fighter crashes in Pacific off Okinawa

TOKYO (AP) - May 27, 2013

The F-15, flying out of Kadena Air Base, went down in the Pacific about 115 kilometers (70 miles) east of Okinawa, the military said in a statement.

Lt. Col. David Honchul, the chief spokesman for the U.S. Forces, Japan, said the pilot was recovered safely after a search by U.S. and Japanese rescue crews. After he ejected from the plane the pilot remained in contact with the rescuers.

The cause was under investigation. The pilot's name has not been released.

The U.S. military has about 50,000 troops based in Japan, about half of them on Okinawa. Kadena Air Base is one of the largest U.S. airbases in the Asia-Pacific region. The F-15 was attached to Kadena's 18th Wing.

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