Plane Crashes at Martinsburg Air Show, Kills Pilot
Updated: Saturday, 17 Sep 2011, 11:32 PM EDT
Published : Saturday, 17 Sep 2011, 6:06 PM EDT
By JOHN HENREHAN/ myfoxdc
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - The pilot of a vintage aircraft was killed, Saturday, when his plane nose-dived into the ground at an air show in Martinsburg, West Virginia. No other plane was involved in the mishap, and no spectators were injured or killed.
A civilian acrobatic group called Trojan Horsemen had been performing at the show with propeller planes called T-28's, most of which were built in the 1950's.
One of the pilots headed his plane straight toward the ground, but, rather than pulling up, his aircraft kept diving, crashing straight into the south end of the runways. A huge orange fireball briefly erupted, then was replaced with black smoke. Spectators were well away from the crash.
The airport near Martinsburg is jointly run by civilians and the West Virginia National Guard. Maj. General James Hoyer told reporters, to his knowledge, the pilot made no distress call before the crash. Hoyer said National Transportation Safety Board investigators would examine the wreckage, interview witnesses, and review videos posted on the internet.
Witnesses said, shortly after the crash, the thousands of spectators fell eerily quiet. Albert McGilvrey, the news director of WRNR-AM radio, described the scene: "I saw a tremendous amount of people just bowing their heads, starting to pray. There wasn't a sound. It was utter, utter silence."
The pilot of the aircraft has not yet been identified.
Organizers of the huge air show have canceled Sunday activities.
Read more: http://www.myfoxdc.com/dpp/news/local/plane-crashes-at-martinsburg-air-show-kills-pilot-091711#ixzz1YJSUDKr6