Navy Declares Pilot in Death Valley Super Hornet Crash Dead

USNI News | 8/1/2019 | Sam LaGrone
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The pilot of a single-seat F/A-18E fighter that crashed on Wednesday has been declared dead, Navy officials said Thursday afternoon.

“The Navy has confirmed that the pilot of the F/A-18E Super Hornet that crashed July 31st died in the crash,” spokeswoman Lt. Cmdr. Lydia Bock told USNI News in a statement.

Identity - Pilot - Hours - Notification - Kin

“The identity of the pilot will be withheld until 24 hours following notification of next of kin. The Navy mourns the loss of one of our own, and our hearts go out to the family and friends affected by this tragedy.”

The Super Hornet assigned to the “Vigilantes” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 151, based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., crashed at about 10 a.m. local time in the so-called “Star Wars Valley” – a popular spot for military aviation photographers in the Death Valley National Park.

Navy - Summary - Crash - USNI - News

A Navy summary of the crash reviewed by USNI News said the aircraft impacted against the side of the canyon wall during low altitude training.

The National Park Service told reporters that seven people suffered minor injuries as a result of the crash.

Accounts - Aircraft - Canyon - Wall - Speed

Eye-witness accounts said the aircraft had run into the canyon wall at high speed, creating a mushroom cloud that could be seen for miles in the surrounding desert....
(Excerpt) Read more at: USNI News
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