Saturday, August 20, 2011

Red Arrow pilot killed in airshow crash.

BOURNEMOUTH, England, Aug. 20 (UPI) -- A member of the elite Red Arrow stunt flying team was killed in a crash Saturday at an airshow in southern England, the British Ministry of Defense said.

The pilot was identified as Flight Lt. Jon Egging, British Forces News reported. Group Capt. Simon Blake, commandant of the RAF's Central Flying School, said Egging, nicknamed "Eggman," joined the Red Arrows last fall.

"A gifted aviator, he was chosen to fly in the Red 4 slot, on the right hand outside of the famous Diamond Nine formation -- an accolade in itself being the most demanding position allocated to a first-year pilot," Blake said.

The Red Arrows were performing at the Bournemouth Air Festival, which was scheduled to end Sunday. The team had completed a flawless series of acrobatics when one plane vanished, the Bournemouth Echo reported.

Witnesses described the rest of the team waiting on the tarmac at Bournemouth Airport for the ninth plane to land.

The plane crashed in the village of Throop.

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