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Procession held for Colorado Marine killed in aircraft crash in Australia

Maj. Tobin Lewis, originally from Conifer, Colorado, was killed in the crash on an island off the coast of Australia.

DENVER — A procession for a Colorado Marine who died in an aircraft crash in Australia last month took place Thursday.

Maj. Tobin Lewis, originally from Conifer, was among three killed in the crash on an island off the coast of Australia. 

"It’s just really hard and heartbreaking, I just can't imagine," said Jackie Bowlin, one of hundreds of people who lined the route of the procession. "He lost his life in service to our country." 

Lewis was designated a Naval Aviator in 2012 after completing advanced flight training. He executed orders to Marine Aircraft Group 24(-) aboard Marine Corps Base Hawaii. There he worked in the operations department until becoming the executive officer of VMM-363.

Lewis logged more than 1,800 military flight hours. His personal awards include Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with gold star and Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.

The afternoon procession followed this route from Centennial Airport to Evergreen Memorial Park:

  • Depart: 8201 S Interport Blvd (Modern Aviation)
  • South on S Peoria Street to E-470.
  • West on E-470 to Hwy 285
  • West on Hwy 285 to Barkley Road in Conifer Co.
  • West on Barkley Road to County Road 73
  • North on County Road 73 to N Turkey Creek Road
  • East on N Turkey Creek Road to venue.
  • Arrive: 26624 N Turkey Creek Rd.

"We reach out to the community through media and social media to ask for your support lining the route with flags to honor this hero as he is returned home to receive the honors he deserves," the release said.

The Marine V-22B Osprey with 23 Marines on board crashed Sunday, Aug. 27 in a tropical forest on Melville Island while taking part in Exercise Predators Run, a drill that included the militaries of Australia, Indonesia, the Philippines and East Timor.

Osprey pilot Capt. Eleanor V. Beau, 29, originally of Belleville, Illinois; Cpl. Spencer R. Collart, 21, from Arlington, Virginia also died in the crash.

All 20 survivors were injured and were flown by rescue aircraft 50 miles south to the city of Darwin within hours of the crash.

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