25-Year-Old Airman Newly Stationed in Alaska Killed on the Job; Investigation Underway

Airman 1st Class Charles Crumlett
Airman 1st Class Charles Crumlett, 335th Aircraft Maintenance Unit weapons load crew member, prepares a weapon to be loaded during the 4th Quarter Load Crew of the Quarter competition, Jan. 26, 2018, at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kenneth Boyton)

An airman stationed at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Alaska who died on the job late last week has been identified, and the circumstances of the incident are under investigation.

Staff Sgt. Charles A. Crumlett, a 25-year-old from Streamwood, Illinois, died March 15 "during a workplace incident," according to a Monday press release. He was a weapons load crew chief who worked on the F-15 Strike Eagle, A-10 Warthog and F-22 Raptor.

He was a member of the 90th Fighter Generation Squadron after being stationed at JBER on Feb. 4 of this year.

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"Sgt. Crumlett's drive and willingness to help his fellow maintainers is a loss for the entire maintenance community," Lt. Col. Charles Bayne, the 90th Fighter Generation Squadron commander, said in a press release. "Though he was only with us a short time, Charlie will always be a Diceman. We send our thoughts and prayers to his family, friends and the entire maintenance community."

Crumlett joined the Air Force on Nov. 29, 2016, according to the news release. After graduating Basic Military Training, he studied at Sheppard Air Force Base in Texas and graduated as a weapons load crew member in January 2017. His first duty station was at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina.

Crumlett's awards and decorations included two Air and Space Commendation Medals and one Air Force Achievement Medal, according to the press release.

"It's such a tragedy to lose anyone so young and full of promise," said Col. Christopher Tooman, 3rd Maintenance Group commander. "Charlie's dedication and support to his fellow maintainers will be deeply missed. We send our deepest sympathies to his family, friends and all the airmen whose lives Charlie touched."

Officials with the Air Force Office of Special Investigations are conducting an ongoing investigation into the circumstances of Crumlett's death.

"Charlie had such a promising future in our Air Force," Col. Kevin Jamieson, 3rd Wing commander, said in a press release. "Though he was new to JBER, it was immediately clear that Charlie had a passion for his duty and for service. Our heartfelt condolences go out to his family, friends and fellow airmen. He will be greatly missed."

The Department of Defense casualty analysis system shows that, in 2022 alone, the latest data year available, there were 265 deaths among active-duty military members caused by accidents.

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