An air commando died from injuries suffered in a ground vehicle accident during training on the Melrose Air Force Range in New Mexico, west of Cannon Air Force Base. The airman succumbed to the effects of head trauma while in a local hospital on May 12, one day after the mishap involving the utility task vehicle, according to officials with Cannon’s 27th Special Operations Wing. A second air commando was injured in the accident, but released from the hospital the same day as the mishap, Maj. Mindy Yu, 27th SOW spokeswoman told Air Force Magazine on May 13. As of Wednesday afternoon, the Air Force had not released the deceased airman’s name, pending notification of kin. The cause of the accident is under investigation. Yu confirmed that preliminary information indicates the vehicle rolled over.
The Air Force overall reduced its size by 120 aircraft in fiscal year 2021, but kept about the same number of fighter, bomber and attack aircraft, according to data supplied by the service. The F-35 fleet saw the biggest increase while the B-1B bomber fleet saw the largest decline.