MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine military says a Filipino paratrooper who parachuted from a C130 plane with U.S. forces has died after a wind gust blew him out to sea instead of the airport drop zone.
Philippine military spokesman Capt. Celeste Frank Sayson says the paratrooper from a special air force operations unit was rescued 15 minutes after the accident Thursday at the Subic Bay freeport, a former U.S. Naval base northwest of Manila Thursday, but he died later in a hospital.
About 3,500 Filipino troops and 5,000 American military personnel are participating in the Balikatan or shoulder-to-shoulder combat exercises that started Monday. The 11-day maneuvers aim to prepare U.S. and Philippine troops to quickly respond to a range of potential crises, including in the disputed South China Sea.