Kitty signed us up for a greyhound meet and greet at the Martinsburg, WV air national guard's "Thunder over the blue ridge" air show. Kitty is still weak and sat in our "Sunny" outdoor recliner all day. We were in hangar 308, with the dogs. Around 2:30pm today, I walked out the front of the hangar and watched the T-28 Trojan horsemen demonstration team. Five or so minutes later, two of the aircraft passed belly-to-belly. The westbound aircraft did a partial roll and then went down in a ball of fire. The pilot's name was Jack "Flash" Mangan, from North Carolina. The remaining five aircraft in the team circled the airport a few times, and were diverted to a nearby airport. As they turned north, they formed a missing man formation and left the area. Please keep the pilot's family, as well as the other pilots in the team in your thoughts and prayers..
Here's the pilot and his plane, shortly before taking off for the demonstration.
The crash and response...
The investigation begins..
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Here's the official press release, from the ANG.
PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE, 167th AIRLIFT WING
WEST VIRGINIA AIR NATIONAL GUARD, MARTINSBURG, WV 25401
TELEPHONE NUMBER (304) 616-5251
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Civilian Pilot Dies When Aircraft Crashes
at Thunder Over the Blue Ridge Air Show
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. – A T-28 aircraft crashed at about 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 17, 2011, during an acrobatic demonstration at the 2011 Thunder Over the Blue Ridge Open House & Air Show hosted at the 167th Airlift Wing in Martinsburg.
The aircraft was piloted by a single civilian pilot, who died as a result of the crash. The plane was a T-28 aircraft with the Trojan Horse T-28 demonstration team, a civilian aerobatics group that tours the nation performing at air shows.
Pending confirmation of notification of next of kin through official channels, no identifying information will be released.
No one on the ground was injured as a result of the incident, and no other aircraft were damaged. The crash site was distant from any spectators.
The incident is under investigation by federal and local authorities, who are now in control of the scene.
“We were fortunate that the safety measures put in place by the Federal Aviation Administration ensured the safety of those on the ground,” said Maj. Gen. James Hoyer, adjutant general of the West Virginia National Guard. “Right now our thoughts and prayers are with the family members of the deceased.”