PORTSMOUTH, Va. (AP/WAVY) - Some members of the Navy SEALs team killed in Saturday's Chinook crash in Afghanistan were based in Hampton Roads.
SEAL Team 6, also known as the Naval Special Warfare Development Group, is based in Dam Neck , Va.
U.S. officials tell The Associated Press that they believe that none of the Navy SEALs who died in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan had participated in the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, although they were from the same unit that carried out the bin Laden mission.
Sources say that more than 20 Navy SEALs were among those lost in the crash in Afghanistan.
The operators from SEAL Team 6 were flown by a regular Army crew. That's according to AP military sources.
Another source says the team was thought to include 22 SEALs, three Air Force air controllers, seven Afghan Army troops, a dog and his handler, and a civilian interpreter, plus the helicopter crew.
The sources thought this was the largest single loss of life ever for SEAL Team 6.
All sources spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive military matters.
Congressman Robert "Bobby" Scott released this statement on Saturday's attack:
" Today, the 31 U.S. troops who died made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our country. We owe these service members, and their families, a tremendous debt of gratitude. Our fallen heroes leave behind a safer and freer nation because of their ultimate sacrifice. Words cannot express the deep sorrow and sadness that we feel as a result of this brutal act and excessive loss of life. But our service members have not died in vain. Their courage and sacrifices will never be forgotten by a grateful nation that will honor and remember the heroic actions of these brave Americans."
Virginia Senator Webb issued the following statement:
"I would like to join in expressing sorrow for the grieving families and appreciation for the sacrifices made for our country."
Former Governor Tim Kaine released this statement:
" My prayers and deepest sympathies are with the families and friends of those we lost in Afghanistan...Their sacrifice will not be forgotten and their deaths should be a reminder to all Americans that our freedom and security is neither free nor secure."
Gov. Bob McDonnell released the following statement:
"Maureen and I are both heartbroken over the news of the loss of 31 American military members in eastern Afghanistan. They died serving their nation, and defending the cause of freedom and liberty. We know that freedom is not free; it has never been, and never will be. Every day, brave Americans are on the front lines in dangerous locations around the world. While we carry on our daily activities here at home, these men and women suffer greatly, give much and, all too often, sacrifice all to protect this nation that we love. Virginia has long had a special relationship with the United States military. We are home to major military facilities which are an integral part of the culture and life of our Commonwealth. When news such as this comes across our televisions, Virginians know it is not a distant matter. It often means mourning in our cities and our neighborhoods; we watch as it touches our friends and our families. At this time of trying and pain, our thoughts and prayers are with those who were lost, and the loved ones they have left behind. God bless the brave Americans who have left us. God Bless their families and friends. And may God continue to always bless America."
Virginia Beach Mayor Will Sessoms offered his condolences through this release:
" On behalf of the city of Virginia Beach, I offer my sincere condolences to the families and colleagues of the SEALs who lost their lives today after an insurgent helicopter attack in Afghanistan. My heart goes out to them. We are deeply grateful every day for the service and sacrifices that they and all other members of the military make."
All flags at Virginia Beach municipal buildings will be flown at half mast from August 7 to the 8.
Norfolk Police are investigating the cause of death for male found unconscious on the beach.
Suffolk police are looking for a man and a woman they say robbed a Kangaroo Express gas station on Wilroy Road Sunday afternoon.
The art of making jewelry is helping some Norfolk students learn independence and job skills.