An Air Force Thunderbirds plane crashed after an Air Force Academy graduation ceremony in Colorado Springs which President Barack Obama was attending, according to reports from the Associated Press and other sources. The pilot ejected from the aircraft and walked away unharmed, a Peterson Air Force Base representative told the Denver Post.
Related Read: Navy Blue Angels Jet Crashes in Tennessee, Killing Pilot
The air demonstration team was performing at the graduation ceremony near the Colorado Springs airport. The crash occurred about 15 miles south of the Air Force Academy, while the president was still at the location of the graduation ceremony.
The Thunderbirds were founded in 1953, taking their name from Native American folklore in the area of Luke Air Force Base in Arizona. They have performed demonstrations to show the skill of the pilots and performance of their aircraft since that time. Accidents aren’t unknown: a crash in 1964 was found to have been caused by a structural fault in a F-105B Thunderchief aircraft and necessitated a switch away from the F-105B back to the F-100C Super Sabre.
A Blue Angels pilot was killed in a crash on Thursday in advance of an air show in Tennessee.
Editor’s Note: The date of the F-105B crash has been corrected. The event occured in 1964.
Filed Under: Aerospace + defense