MIRAMAR, Fla.—The pilot of the F/A-18 who died when his plane collided with a KC-130 during a training exercise off the coast of Japan was from Florida.

Captain Jahmar F. Resilard, 28, was identified by the Marine Corps as the pilot. He was from Miramar, Florida.

A search and rescue operation led to the discovery of Resilard’s body off the coast of Kochi, Japan.

"The Bats are deeply saddened by the loss of Captain Jahmar Resilard. He was an effective and dedicated leader who cared for his Marines and fellow fighter pilots with passion. His warm and charismatic nature bound us together and we will miss him terribly. We honor his service and his contribution to the Marine Corps and our great nation. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends," Lieutenant Colonel James Compton, commanding officer of Marine All Weather Fighter Attack Squadron 242 said.

Upon hearing the news, Florida governor Rick Scott issued the following statement:

"Ann and I are heartbroken to learn of the death of Floridian and U.S. Marine Corps Capt. Jahmar Resilard. As an F/A-18 fighter pilot in the Marine All Weather Attack Squadron 242 stationed on Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni in Yamaguchi, Japan, Capt. Resilard defended the freedom and democracy of not only the United States but of families in nations across the globe. The loss of Capt. Resilard is a somber reminder of the danger our servicemen and women both home and abroad place themselves in every day to keep us safe. The entire State of Florida joins Capt. Resilard’s family in honoring his bravery and legacy of service. While we mourn this tragic loss, I encourage every Florida family to join us this holiday season in praying for peace for the families of Capt. Resilard and the many other courageous military members who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation and freedoms.”

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Resilard was a decorated pilot with the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and National Defense Service Medal.

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