US Air Force Reports First Death from H1N1 (Swine Flu) Complications
News in Balance:
LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz., Oct. 15, 2009 -- A Luke Air Force Base NCO died Oct. 4 from complications with the H1N1 virus at his off-base residence in Glendale, Ariz.
Staff Sgt. Shawn J. Rankin, 25, died at approximately 4 a.m. and was unresponsive to emergency responders at his residence and then transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Sergeant Rankin's death resulted from complications with the H1N1 virus, according to preliminary autopsy results from the Maricopa County Medical Examiner's Office.
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to Sergeant Rankin's family, co-workers, and friends," said Brig. Gen. Kurt F. Neubauer, the 56th Fighter Wing commander. "He was a valuable member of Team Luke, and he will be greatly missed."
Sergeant Rankin of Anchorage, Alaska, was assigned to the 56th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron and served as an F-16 Fighting Falcon crew chief at Luke AFB since February 2008. Sergeant Rankin joined the Air Force in October 2003.
He is the first Airmen to die of complications related to H1N1.
(Report from a U.S. Air Force news release.)