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Entries in Air Show (7)

Sunday
Jun232013

Moment of Silence Planned for Pair Killed in Ohio Air Show Accident

Hemera/Thinkstock(DAYTON, Ohio) -- The Vectren Dayton Air Show in Ohio will re-open Sunday afternoon with a moment of silence for the wing walker and her pilot who were killed in this weekend's air show crash, an air show spokesman told ABC News.

The moment of silence will take place Sunday at 11:55 a.m., before the show continues at noon. Continuing an air show after a fatal accident is a time-honored tradition to honor the dead.

"The thing is if you would ask virtually any of the air show pilots if something happened to them during an air show what they would want to have done, they would tell you they would want to have the show go on because that's what they live for and that's what they really love," Andy Stanley, a search and rescue pilot, told ABC News' Ohio affiliate WKEF-TV.

In a statement released on Saturday, organizers of the Vectren Dayton Air Show confirmed the deaths of wing walker Jane Wicker and her pilot Charlie Schwenker.

"The Vectren Dayton Air Show Presented by Kroger expresses its condolences to the families of wingwalker Jane Wicker, 44 and pilot, Charlie Schwenker, 64, whose lives were lost during their performance at the show on Saturday, June 22nd. The FAA and other agencies are currently investigating the accident and results are not expected for several months," organizers said.

Video from the event appeared to show a wing walker sitting on the wing of her single-engine plane as it suddenly crashed into a grassy field at the Dayton International Airport.

"I'm not sure if it was a mistake or if there was a mechanical problem," said Joel John, who witnessed the crash, told ABC affiliate WKEF-TV. "From what I saw the plane was really low, they tried to do a flip and that's where it looked like the pilot lost the balance."

The plane that crashed was licensed to Wicker, an FAA official told ABC News.

The National Transportation Safety Board and the FAA are investigating the crash.

Kris Nuss had worked with the wing walker and pilot before.

"Absolutely fabulous people," she said. "I was amazed at how much trust both of them had in each other."

A post on the Jane Wicker Airshows Facebook also addressed the crash.

"It is with sad hearts that we announce that Jane Wicker and Charlie Schwenker were tragically killed while performing at the Vectren Dayton Airshow," the post said. "We ask for your prayers for the families and privacy of all involved and allow them time to grieve and work through these events."

According to her website, Wicker has been wing walking since 1990, when she answered an ad because she thought "it would be an exciting way to enter the air show business."

In addition to being a wing walker and pilot, she is also a full-time budget analyst at the FAA.

A man who answered the number listed on Jane Wicker's website declined to comment.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Monday
Sep192011

Plane's Video Memory Cards Could Hold Clues to Reno Crash

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(RENO, Nev.) -- The World War II-era stunt plane that crashed into a grandstand near Reno, Nevada, killing nine, was equipped with a video camera that could help investigators learn what led to the crash.

National Transportation Safety Board officials said Sunday that the airplane had a recording system, and a box containing memory cards was found at the scene of the crash.

Investigators say they'll analyze the cards to see if there is any footage that could explain what happened.

The crash happened Friday during an air race in Reno, injuring a total of 69 people seated in the VIP seats on the tarmac.  Witnesses said that as the P-51 Mustang Galloping Ghost piloted by Jimmy Leeward rounded the final clubhouse turn, something dropped off the tail of the plane, and that that may have been what caused the problem.

NTSB investigators recovered a component in the area where witnesses say they saw something drop.  Officials said it's unclear whether this is connected to the plane that crashed or another one.

The tragedy in Reno was another near miss for Commander Mark Kelly, husband of Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords who was shot in the head earlier this year in Tucson.  Kelly was scheduled to fly a P-51 similar to the one that crashed at the Reno air show, though he was not going to be racing.  He apparently did not witness the crash.

As investigators work to piece together what caused the crash, officials are also looking into another fatal air show crash this weekend.

A day after the air race crash in Reno, an antique plane crashed at an air show in Martinsburg, West Virginia, Saturday.  Pilot John Mangan was flying a 1958 T-28 Warbird when it suddenly crashed after completing an acrobatic move with another T-28.  Mangan was killed.  No other injuries were reported.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Sep182011

Reno Air Race Crash: Investigators Comb Through Debris

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(RENO, Nev.) -- Investigators in Nevada today are continuing to comb the accident site where a stunt plane crashed during an air race in Reno.

Nine people died including the pilot when a World War II era plane crashed into the VIP seats on the tarmac Friday. A total of 69 people were injured.

Eyewitnesses said that as the P-51 Mustang Galloping Ghost piloted by Jimmy Leeward rounded the final clubhouse turn, something dropped off the tail of the plane, and that that may have been what caused the problem.

National Transportation Safety Board investigators recovered a component in the area where witnesses say they saw something drop.

Officials said it's unclear whether this is connected to this plane or another one.

NTSB investigators say they may not have a flight data recorder. But the numerous photos and personal video accounts from spectators will assist officials in the investigation.

"That will be a huge help for us," said NTSB spokesman Mark Rosekind.

In fact, the photos appear to support eyewitness accounts that pieces of the P51's tail started falling off.

"Pictures and video appear to show a piece of the plane was coming off," Rosekind said at a news conference. "A component has been recovered. We have not identified the component or if it even came from the airplane ... We are going to focus on that."

The tragedy in Reno was another near miss for Commander Mark Kelly, husband of Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords who was shot in the head earlier this year in Tucson.

Kelly was scheduled to fly a p51 similar to the one that crashed, though he was not racing.

He apparently did not witness the crash.

As investigators work to piece together what caused the crash, officials are also looking into another fatal air show crash this weekend.

A day after the air race crash in Reno, an antique plane crashed at an air show in Martinsburg, West Va., Saturday.

Pilot John Mangan was flying a 1958 T-28 Warbird, when it suddenly crashed after completing an acrobatic move with another T-28. Mangan was killed. No other injuries were reported.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Sep172011

Reno, Nevada Air Show Crash: 3 Dead More Than 50 Hurt

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(RENO, Nev.) -- At least three people are dead and more than 50 people were injured after a World War II era fighter plane plunged into the spectator crowd at an air show in Reno, Nevada.

Officials at the National Championship Air Race said a mechanical failure may have caused the P-51 Mustang plane "Galloping Ghost" piloted by Jimmy Leeward, to plummet out of the sky Friday afternoon and crash into the viewer grandstands.

Reno Air Races president Mike Houghton said the plane was on course before the accident occurred.

"Speculation has gone on a different number of different areas to what took place. Different people see different things. But there appear to be some air-flight problem with the aircraft that caused it to go out of control," Houghton said.

Leeward, 74, a real estate developer from Ocala, Fla. was killed in the crash along with two other people.

Houghton described Leeward as "a very experienced and talented and qualified pilot" whose "medical records and everything are up-to-date, spot-on."

At least 56 people were taken to local hospitals, including 15 in critical condition and another 13 were listed in serious condition.

Authorities said it's possible the number of injuries may be even higher because some people left for the hospital in private vehicles.

Connie Camit had just left the grandstand for a refreshment stand with two of her children, 14 and 5, ABC News Radio reported.

"Just as we were standing there, we heard this big crash, turned around and I saw airplane pieces, parts flying everywhere," she said. "We just heard everybody screaming, sirens. It was just chaos, complete chaos."

Eyewitness Gerald Lent was on the scene and described the moments before the crash.

"It pulled straight up and did an upside down roll. It looked like no one was flying the plane. It game straight down toward the grandstand," Lent said.

Republican Senator Dean Heller flew to Reno after the accident and said he wants to be part of investigations into the safety of the event.

"I do not want to see this event here in northern Nevada come to an end. I think it has history, I think people have enjoyed it over the years," he said. "But how do you get over, how do you get over a tragic event like this? And that's what's going to be decided in the next six months."

Federal investigators will be at the scene of the crash Saturday.

"We extend our deepest condolences to the families and friends of those that lost their lives or were injured in this accident," National Transportation Safety Board member Mark Rosekind said in a taped message.

Air show officials have been canceled the rest of remaining events for the weekend.

"The National Championship extends their deepest sympathies and condolences to all of the families involved in today's tragic accident. The Air Races are truly one big family and our thoughts are with all of our aviation family members, immediate and extended," air show officials said in a statement.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Sep162011

Reports of Injury, Mass Casualties at Reno Air Show

A P51 Mustang similar to those shown above, crashed at The National Championship Air Race in Reno, NV. Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(RENO, Nev.) -- Dozens are injured with many possibly in critical condition Friday after a small plane crashed at the Reno National Championship Air Races. As many as 12 are dead and 80-100 injured, according to local reports.

The plane's pilot, Jimmy Leeward, was racing the P-51 Mustang, when the aircraft crashed near the grandstand, where air show spectators were seated, witnesses say.

Authorities on the scene have asked everyone at the air show to leave the Reno-Stead Airport, and all planes have been grounded.

Story is developing…

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Aug212011

Stunt Pilot Dies in Fatal Air Show Crash in Kansas City

Medioimages/Photodisc/Thinkstock(KANSAS CITY) -- A stunt pilot died at a Kansas City air show when his plane spiraled and plummeted nose-first into the ground, in one of two fatal air show plane crashes Saturday.

"Ladies and gentlemen, we have emergency personnel who are prepared for this. We have planned for this sort of an event," a voice said over the loudspeaker as thousands watched, stunned, and one shouted, "Holy cow!"

Upon hitting the ground, the plane immediately burst into flames.

"Huge explosion that you could hear from quite a ways and that was about it, you knew there was no way he was going to survive that, unfortunately," witness Matt Stone said. "So, that was a bad, bad scene."

The pilot, Bryan Jensen, was a professional pilot for Delta Air Lines who had been flying aerobatics for 15 years, according to his website.

No spectators were injured, Missouri Department of Aviation spokesman Joe McBride said.

The Kansas City Aviation Expo Air Show was cut short Saturday after the crash, but is resuming Sunday.

The crash was also the second at an air show this weekend. In England, Saturday, a British Air Force jet crashed during an air show there.

A prestigious Red Arrows pilot, Flight Lieutenant Jon Egging, was killed when his Hawk T1 aircraft broke away from the nine-member RAF display team, began flying low to the ground and crashed into a field near Bournemouth Airport in Dorset, according to the Guardian.

Meanwhile, a Boeing 737 passenger jet crashed Saturday in Canada's High Arctic, killing 12 of the 15 people on board, and injuring three others, Canada's CBC reported. Both black boxes were recovered, but the cause of the crash has not yet been determined.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Mar272011

Pilot Killed During Air Show in Florida

WFTV-TV(BUNNELL, Fla.) -- A Tennessee pilot is dead after his plane burst into flames and spiraled to the ground during an air show in Florida on Saturday.

William E. Walker, 58, lost control of his YAK-52 Russian military plane during formation around 4:30 p.m. at the Flagler County air show, and was killed instantly when the plane went crashing down in front of a crowd of people.

No one else was injured in the crash, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Organizers canceled the remainder of the show on Saturday as FHP officials continued to look into the circumstances of the incident.

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are currently investigating the cause of the crash and have released no other details.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio