Thursday, June 2, 2016

Blue Angels jet crashes; pilot dead

SMYRNA, Tenn. – A Blue Angels jet crashed outside Nashville today, according to multiple news reports, killing the pilot. The name of the pilot is being withheld pending notification of next-of-kin, according to a Navy press release. The crash of the F/A-18 occurred at 3 p.m. as the Blue Angels were practicing for this weekend’s Great Tennessee Air Show. The plane went down about two miles from the runway. None of the other Blue Angels jets were involved. Before the crash the team did a flyover above Nashville. The Blue Angels are the Navy's flight demonstration team. Hours earlier, an Air Force Thunderbirds jet crashed in Colorado Springs, Colo. The plane, an F-16, went down outside Petersen Air Force Base. The pilot was able to eject safely. The Thunderbirds, the Air Force flight demonstration team, had just participated in a flyover at the Air Force Academy’s graduation ceremony. (Sources: multiple, including ABCNews, WKRN, Navy, 06/02/16) Gulf Coast note: The Blue Angels are based at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Fla.