Husband of Burke graduate one of 16 killed in military plane crash

| 20 Jul 2017 | 05:20

(AP) A Marine from Chesapeake, Va., has been identified as one of 16 service members killed in a military plane crash in Mississippi.
The U.S. Marine Forces Reserve on July 17 identified the service members killed.
Among them was Gunnery Sgt. Mark A. Hopkins of Chesapeake, who received several awards and decorations during his service — including a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal and four Humanitarian Service Medals.
The John S. Burke Catholic High School Alumni Association posted on its Facebook page: “Our condolences to Patricia Ferguson Hopkins (Class of 2002), and family. Patricia’s husband, Gunnery Sgt. Mark Hopkins, was killed in the service of this country in the tragic crash of a military plane in Mississippi on Monday. Our prayers are with Gunnery Sgt. Hopkins, Patricia, their three children, and all their family members, friends, and military family.”
The 15 Marines and one Navy sailor were headed for pre-deployment training in Yuma, Arizona, when their KC-130 air tanker went down in a cornfield in Mississippi.
Hopkins, a navigator stationed at Stewart, joined the Marines in 2001, shortly after graduating from Great Bridge High School in Chesapeake, Virginia. Nicknamed “Hoppy,” his deployments included a tour in Okinawa from 2004 to 2006.
Hopkins leaves behind his wife, Patricia, and three children, 2-year-old Wyatt, 1-year-old Abby, and infant Lewis, according to a family statement released through Hopkins’ church near the air base in New York.
“He was an avid traveler and especially enjoyed spur-of-the-moment road trips — there was never a dull moment with him,” the statement says. “He was a deeply spiritual man who shared his faith with others and lived his life to its fullest.”
Hopkins was born in Ypsilanti, Michigan, and his mother and brother live in nearby Belleville. A sister lives in Middleton, Wisconsin, while a brother lives in Louisville, Kentucky.