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Fallen Virginia State Troopers Identified

Fallen Virginia State Troopers Identified

Photo: Pilots Lt. Jay Cullen, 48, (l.), and Berke M.M. Bates, 40, (r.) died in a helicopter crash while monitoring the violent clashes in Charlottesville.


The two Virginia State Police pilots who were killed in a helicopter crash while monitoring the violent clashes in Virginia on Saturday have been identified.

The helicopter was hovering near the white nationalist rally when it crashed into a wooded area on Old Farm Road around 5 p.m., just outside the city of Charlottesville, police said.

Virginia State Police confirmed that pilots Lt. H. Jay Cullen, 48, of Midlothian, and Berke M.M. Bates, 40, of Quinton, died in the wreck.

Governor Terry McAuliffe said he had known both pilots since 2014.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Jay and Berke, both of whom were our close friends and trusted members of our team,” McAuliffe said in a statement.

Cullen had over 20 years of service with the state police and is survived by a wife and two sons.

Bates, a 13-year veteran of the state police, died one day shy of his 41st birthday. He is survived by his wife and two children, a son and daughter.

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