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Decorated Marine, Williamsburg native, among 7 dead in Blackhawk crash

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Posted at 5:18 PM, Mar 13, 2015
and last updated 2015-03-14 09:16:12-04
saunders with wings

Master Sgt. Thomas A. Saunders, 33, was a native of Williamsburg, Virginia

MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. — A Virginia Marine was among the seven who died Tuesday, at approximately 8: 30 p.m. when a U.S. Army UH-60 Blackhawk Helicopter crashed during a training mission near Navarre, Florida.

Master Sgt. Thomas A. Saunders, 33, was a native of Williamsburg, Virginia. He served within the U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Special Operational Command (MARSOC) as a team chief. His personal awards include the Joint Service Commendation Medal, two Navy Marine Commendation Medal, five Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals, the Combat Infantry Badge, and five Good Conduct Medals.

The other Marines identified by MARSCO were: Capt. Stanford H. Shaw, III, 31, from Basking Ridge, New Jersey; Staff Sgt. Marcus S. Bawol, 26, from Warren, Michigan; Staff Sgt. Trevor P. Blaylock, 29, from Lake Orion, Michigan; Staff Sgt. Liam A. Flynn, 33, from Queens, New York; Staff Sgt. Kerry M. Kemp, 27, from Port Washington, Wisconsin; and Staff Sgt. Andrew C. Seif, 26, from Holland, Michigan.

Their bios and photos can be found here.