Enemy Fire Caused Copter Collision In Iraq

FORT DRUM, N.Y. — The military now says enemy fire caused two U.S. Army helicopters to collide in Iraq last month, killing a soldier from Colville.

The report was released after a memorial service for Chief Warrant Officer 2 Benjamin H. Todd, 29, and three fellow soldiers at Fort Drum, where they were based.

The Defense Department initially said the cause of the Jan. 26 crashes near Kirkuk didn’t appear to be an attack. But on Thursday, the Army said forensic evidence revealed that the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopters collided while evading enemy fire and crashed.

Pilots Philip Windorski, Joshua Tillery, Matthew Kelley and were also killed in the crash.