By Lynn R. Mitchell
Local newspapers are covering the military fighter jet crash in western Augusta County with reporters on the scene interviewing and photographing events.
Reporter Bob Stuart spent most of the day in the crash area and filed this report with the News-Virginian (see Search continues for missing pilot):
As part of a program to upgrade earlier model aircraft, the plane was en route to New Orleans to get a new radar system when it went down.
At the Staunton News Leader, Brad Zinn, Laura Peters, Megan Williams, and Calvin Trice contributed to the continuing coverage (see Search for pilot to continue through the night):
Helicopters and ground search teams will continue looking for the missing F-15 pilot through the night, according to Corrine Geller, Virginia State Police spokeswoman. Search crew are looking for the Massachusetts National Guard pilot on foot and horseback, using canines.
Many are praying for the pilot’s safety. There have been unconfirmed reports that he ejected before the crash. The crash area is heavily wooded and in rugged mountains with a heavy leaf canopy. The pilot reportedly did not have a radio, and there is no cell phone service. Black bears, poisonous snakes, and other critters are part of the George Washington National Forest in the Appalachian Mountains of western Augusta County.
Also from LynnRMitchell.com:
– Day 3: Air National Guard pilot killed in Virginia crash identified
– F-15 pilot killed in Augusta County, Va, crash
– Search for pilot moves closer to Staunton
– Day 2: Search continues for downed Air National Guard pilot in Augusta County
– Breaking news: State of emergency called by Augusta County in search for missing Air Guard pilot
– Military fighter jet crashes in mountains of western Augusta County — UPDATED
– Gratitude expressed by Mass. Air National Guard for efforts searching for downed pilot