PORT WENTWORTH, Ga. – The Puerto Rico National Guard has released the names of the nine men who died aboard a military plane that went down Wednesday in Port Wentworth.
The C-130 cargo plane had just taken off from Savannah/Hilton Head International airport when it plunged from the sky onto Georgia's Highway 21, investigators said.
With the exception of the co-pilot, all of the men resided in Puerto Rico. All but one of the men were fathers.
The pilot of the plane was identified as Maj. Jose R. Roman Rosado of Manati. He served for 18 years and is survived by his pregnant wife and two sons.
A childhood friend said Roman Rosado's nickname was Rotor, because he loved all things with a motor. In 2017, he and the other men performed rescue and recovery missions in the Caribbean following Hurricanes Irma and Maria.
The same friend said back in December, Roman Rosado raised concerns about the age of the planes they were flying back in December. There are conflicting reports on whether the crashed C-130 was 60-years-old or closer to 40-years-old.
Other crewmen who lost their lives
Maj. Carlos Perez Serra of Canovanas, who was the plane's navigator, served 23 years. He is survived by his wife, two sons and daughter.
1st Lt. David Albandoz was the plane's co-pilot and served 16 years. He was from Puerto Rico but was living in Madison, Alabama. He is survived by his wife and daughter.
Senior Master Sgt. Jan Paravisini of Canovanas spent 21 years in the National Guard. He was a mechanic and is survived by his two daughters and son.
Master Sgt. Jean Audriffred of Carolina served 16 years. He is survived by his wife and two sons.
Master Sgt. Mario Brana of Bayamon was the flight engineer and had 17 years of service in the National Guard. He is survived by his mother and daughter.
Master Sgt. Victor Colon of Santa Isabel is survived by his wife and two daughters. He spent 22 years in the National Guard.
Master Sgt. Eric Circuns of Rio Grande was a loadmaster and dedicated himself to the National Guard for 31 years. He is survived by his wife, two step-daughters and son.
Senior Airman Roberto Espada of Salinas is survived by his grandmother. He served three years.