TOKYO - Japan's military said Friday that three crew died in a helicopter crash, a day after the chopper went missing in bad weather.
The Maritime Self-Defence Force, Japan's navy, initially said the trio had no heartbeat when they were found on Friday morning during a search and rescue mission.
Authorities later confirmed that all three men were killed. In Japan, a doctor must confirm someone has died before it is official.
The OH-6DA helicopter went missing in the southern region of Kyushu on Thursday morning.
It was later found in dense woods along with its crew, two of whom were experienced instructors in their 30s and 40s. The third was a trainee in his 20s who was learning aircraft navigation.
It was not immediately clear what caused the accident, but the military said the crew had changed their flight plan in mid-air due to poor weather.