The headline in the Virginia Pilot newspaper on July 12, 1979 read:
"Police Helicopter Crashes; 2 Beach Officers Missing"
Officers Black and Mobley were operating a Virginia Beach Police Helicopter when it crashed in the Atlantic Ocean just south of Rudee Inlet between Croatan and Dam Neck at 11:27 P.M. the night before. The helicopter had been dispatched to locate a disabled boat. Officers Black and Mobley located the disabled boat anchored about a quarter mile off shore and were guiding another boat to it with the police helicopter spotlight when the crash occurred. A witness stated "... the pilot looked like he was making a dive to go into a swoop, but once he dove, he could never get the craft back up ..."
Officer Black was 28 years old and a native of Montreal, Canada. He had obtained his United States Citizenship in 1973, and had joined the Virginia Beach Police Department on August 1, 1973.
Detective Mobley was 36 years old and a native of Columbus, Georgia. He had a wife, a daughter and a son when he died. He had joined the Virginia Beach Police Department on December 19, 1967. In 1977 he was selected Police Officer of the Year by the Virginia Beach Jaycees. He had also received a third place award from the Virginia State Jaycees as an Outstanding Young Law Enforcement Officer from Virginia that same year.