The Defense Department has reclassified the death of Cpl. Jordan L. Spears as one that occurred in support of the military's effort to combat the Islamic State group, making him the first official casualty of Operation Inherent Resolve.

Spears was lost in the Persian Gulf on Oct. 1 when he jumped from an MV-22B Osprey that nearly crashed shortly after taking off from the flight deck of the amphibious assault ship Makin Island. His death was previously listed by Defense Department officials as a non-global war on terror casualty.

It was officially reclassified in an Oct. 28 Defense Department news release.

"The Department of Defense announced today the reclassification of a previously reported death of a Marine in support of Operation Inherent Resolve," the release states.

Spears, 21, of Memphis, Indiana, was with Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 163 out of Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California. The squadron was assigned to the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit, which was supporting Operation Inherent Resolve, the fight against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.

Spears died after the Osprey he was in briefly lost power after taking off from the ship. He and another Marine jumped out of the aircraft. The pilot subsequently regained control of the aircraft, and safely landed on back on the Makin Island. The other Marine was recovered from the water. The cause of the power loss is being investigated.

On Friday, Defense Department officials identified a second Marine who died while supporting Operation Inherent Resolve.

Lance Cpl. Sean P. Neal, 19, died Oct. 23 in Baghdad in a noncombat incident, according to a news release. He was a mortarman with 2nd Battalion, 7th Marines, an infantry unit based in Twentynine Palms, California. His death is currently under investigation.

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