Navy Identifies Pilot Killed In Latest Military Aviation Accident

REUTERS/Omar Sobhani

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Ryan Pickrell China/Asia Pacific Reporter
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The U.S. Navy has identified the military pilot killed when his A-29 Super Tucano light-attack aircraft crashed Friday.

One of two airmen on board and a member of the 49th Wing at Holloman Air Force Base, Navy Lt. Christopher Carey Short, died Friday when his plane went down during flight demonstrations at Red Rio Bombing Range at the Army’s White Sands Missile Range, a facility located about 65 miles from the Air Force base. (RELATED: Aircraft Crashes Near Holloman Air Force Base)

The other crew member suffered minor injuries and was taken to a local hospital for treatment.

Short was involved in the Air Force’s Light Attack Experiment prior to his death, which was announced late Saturday night. The New York native from Canandaigua primarily tested the A-29 and the AT-6B Wolverine light-attack aircraft.

“There’s no way to to describe the shock of this loss and the sadness we feel for his family,” Col. Houston Cantwell, commander of Holloman Air Force Base’s 49th Wing, said in a statement posted on Facebook. “He did pioneering work in aviation that will help shape American air power for years to come. We’re thankful to have known him and grateful for his devotion to duty.”

The cause of the crash is under investigation.

Friday’s accident is the latest in a string of deadly military aviation mishaps this year. As of May 3, just one day after a Puerto Rico Air National Guard WC-130 went down near Savannah, Georgia killing all nine people on board, a total of 27 U.S. service members had been killed in noncombat aviation accidents, according to a report from CNN.

An earlier Task & Purpose analysis concluded that in the one-year period between April 2017 and April 2018, 47 U.S. service members died in noncombat aircraft mishaps, more than the total number of U.S. military personnel killed in combat in Afghanistan during that same period.

Friday’s crash was reportedly the seventh noncombat accident for the U.S. Air Force this year.

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