Commander of U.S. Marine Corps Air Base in Okinawa Fired Due to ‘Loss of Trust and Confidence’

MV-22 Ospreys are seen at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma in Ginowan, Okinawa, in 2014.
Eric Talmadge/AP

The commander of the U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Futenma in Okinawa, Japan, has been relieved from his post due to a “loss of trust and confidence in his ability to lead his command,” an official statement said without elaborating.

Col. Mark Coppess was fired on Tuesday by Marine Corps Installations Pacific chief Brig. Gen. Paul Rock, according to a III Marine Expeditionary Force statement quoted by Stars and Stripes.

A biography of Coppess on a Marine Corps website has been removed.

The firing of Coppess comes after the commander of the Marines’ Japan-based MV-22 Osprey squadron was dismissed following a series of accidents involving the tilt-rotor aircraft — the most serious last July when an Osprey crashed off the east coast of Australia, killing three Marines.

As NPR’s Mark Katkov reported last year, following that crash, Marine Corps aviation units were ordered to ground all aircraft for 24 hours to focus on safety.

Click here to read more.

SOURCE: NPR, Scott Neuman