July 2nd, 2012|
July 2, 2012
A 49-year-old pilot flying a vintage 1920 airplane in a Bedfordshire, England air show died in front of thousands of people when his plane crashed, reports News 24 and The Independent.
One eyewitness said the plane was flying low and tilting to one side, and “the next moment there was just smoke and flames!”
Police worked with the fire and rescue team to try to save the pilot, but he was pronounced dead not long after the rescue operation began.
Another eyewitness, an elderly woman, had a heart attack and was taken to the hospital.
A third eyewitness said “It is an incredibly awful thing. Everyone saw it. Everyone, including my children, is in a state.”
The plane was the only surviving DH53 Humming Bird, originally built for air trials in 1923. It was flying in a display by the The Shuttleworth Collection depicting the history of flight from the early 1900s up to the 1950s and is famous for its regular flying displays.
A friend said that the pilot had died doing what he loved, and that “there was an incredible passion for flying in him.”
The man’s wife was on the scene shortly after the accident. The couple has two children who were not at the air show.