Thunderbirds will not perform Sunday at Vectren Dayton Air Show

Published: Friday, June 23, 2017 @ 12:42 PM
Updated: Saturday, June 24, 2017 @ 6:10 PM

Latest on Thunderbird crash, Air Show

UPDATE @ 6:10 p.m. (June 24)

While the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds will not fly Sunday at the Vectren Dayton Air Show presented by Kroger, the 2017 show will take off with 10 other features, air show organizers said.

The top attractions include a U.S. Air Force F-35 Heritage Flight and U.S. Navy F-18 Super Hornet demonstration along with Sean Tucker, Misty Blues All Woman Skydiving Team, GEICO Skytypers, Redline Airshows, Rob Holland Ultimate Air Shows, Suzuki Aerosports and a commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the famous Doolittle Raid.

Gates open at 9 a.m. Sunday, with the feature show from 11:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

The Thunderbirds canceled performances Saturday and Sunday following a mishap Friday, when an F-16 aircraft flipped on its top in a grassy area after it landed and was taxiing to a staging area. Pilot Capt. Erik Gonsalves remains at Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, but passenger Tech Staff Sgt. Kenneth Cordova was released this morning.

UPDATE @ 4:35 p.m. (June 24)

The Thunderbirds announced today that they will not perform Sunday at the Vectren Dayton Air Show, according to an update from the flight team.

UPDATE @ 12:30 p.m. (June 24)

The Thunderbirds performance at the Vectren Dayton Air Show is still uncertain Sunday, according to an afternoon update from the flight team.

“The decision to continue flying operations is to be determined,” the Thunderbirds said.

According to Lt. Col. Jason Heard, Commander/Leader of the Thunderbirds, “Safety is our top priority and we are evaluating our processes and readiness to perform.”

UPDATE @ 7:55 a.m. (June 24)

Staff Sgt. Kenneth Cordova has been released from the hospital, according to the Thunderbirds.

“Our priority is taking care of our Thunderbird teammates and ensuring future safety,” said Lt. Col. Jason Heard, Thunderbirds Commander/Leader. “ Both teammates were extremely brave during the extraction and we’d like to thank Wright-Patterson Crash and Recovery, Dayton International Fire and Rescue, local police, medical personnel and team members on scene for their incredible recovery efforts.”

RELATED: A.J. Hawk flies with the Thunderbirds ahead of air show

MORE: Who are the pilots involved in the Thunderbirds jet crash?

UPDATE @ 5:50 p.m.

The top priority of the Dayton International Airport is to ensure crowd safety this weekend and help the Thunderbirds team process the incident, Aviation Director Terrence Slaybaugh said.

"We're obviously very disappointed they won't fly [Saturday]," he said. "We'll get through it."

Slaybaugh said the mishap was a "best-case scenario," with a quick response from emergency teams and no fatalities. 

The airport will work "arm in arm" with the military during its investigation into the accident.

Response teams are working to move the aircraft away from the accident site tonight, he said.

RELATED: Former F-16 pilot says wind likely factor in flip over

UPDATE @ 5:09 p.m.

Lt. Col. Jason Heard of the Thunderbirds says there was a “mishap” with the plane upon landing. The pilot and tactical aircraft maintainer that were on board are in good condition.

Heard said the Thunderbirds will not fly on Saturday.

“From the Thunderbirds that were on scene ... to crash recovery ... to fire department ... it was a tremendous effort. Very impressed and grateful,” Heard said.

The injuries are non life-threatening. The man in the back seat had no visible injuries, Heard said.

The pilot had “a lot of experience,” Heard said, with 1600 hours of experience.

Capt. Erik Gonsalves was the pilot. The passenger was Staff Sgt. Kenneth Cordova.

Heard said “we land in rain all the time.”

Heard said they were able to speak and communicate with the pilot and passenger throughout the recovery effort, which took two hours. They were alert and speaking. 

“The plane sustained damage as it was overturned,” Heard said.

Thunderbird F-16 pilot, team passenger in ‘good condition’ after crash.

UPDATE @ 5 p.m.

The Thunderbirds will be providing an update on the crash and the injured. You can watch live here

UPDATE @ 4:43 p.m.

The Air Force Thunderbirds tweeted their pilot and tactical aircraft maintainer injured in a crash at the Dayton Air Show Friday are in good condition.

In other social media posts by the team, Lt. Col. Jason Heard said, “our first priority is taking care of our Thunderbird teammates and ensuring future safety.” Lt. Col. Heard is the Thunderbirds Commander/Leader.

The performance at Dayton Air Show this weekend is to be determined, but Dayton Air Show organizers say the rest of the planned Dayton Air Show will go on.

UPDATE @ 3:52 p.m.

Terry Slaybaugh, airport director, is speaking. He said it took an “inordinate amount of time” to remove the two occupants of the aircraft. The plane crashed around 12:20 p.m.

A Vectren Dayton Air Show official said the Dayton Air Show will go on as scheduled Saturday. They are unsure yet if the Thunderbirds will fly.

The pilots are conscious and talking.

A ocal man gives eyewitness account of the Thunderbirds plane crash that happened Friday afternoon at Dayton International Airport, leaving two pilots hospitalized.

UPDATE @ 2:38 p.m.

From Thunderbirds Facebook page: “The United States Air Force Thunderbirds were conducting a single-ship familiarization flight on Friday June 23, 2017. Upon landing there was a mishap at the Dayton International Airport with an F-16D Fighting Falcon at approximately 12:20 p.m. Emergency services are on the scene. We will provide more information as it becomes available.”

Members of the United States Air Force Thunderbirds

RELATED: Dayton Air Show: Two previous crashes

UPDATE @ 2:29 p.m.

Reports indicate the second pilot has been removed from the plane.

Officials will soon be giving a live update on the crash. You can watch live here

UPDATE @ 2:05 p.m.

Ricardo von Puttkammer, chief correspondent for Aviation Photojournal, was out in the air field when he witnessed the two-seat Thunderbird taxi on the runway toward the staging area.  

"It was raining, and I was taking pictures of some airplanes," he said. "The plane was taxing and it flipped. Right away the fire department personnel was running toward the accident." 

von Puttkammer said volunteer event staff and media were immediately taken back to the Dayton Airport Expo Center.

UPDATE @ 2:01 p.m.

One pilot has reportedly been extricated and crews are working to extricate a second pilot. 

Toni Bankston, spokeswoman for city of Dayton issued a statement: “The City of Dayton is confirming an aircraft accident involving one of the acts scheduled to appear at the Vectren Dayton Airshow this weekend. There were 2 people on board. Airport Fire and Rescue are providing assistance at the scene. The airport is open.”

PHOTOS: Thunderbird flips on its top at Dayton Air Show

UPDATE @ 1:51 p.m.

Emergency scanner traffic indicates a “front pilot has been disentangled.” Dayton police will escort the medic unit to the hospital.

Thunderbird crash at the Dayton Air Show: What we know now

Delays reported at Dayton airport after weather, military accident

UPDATE @ 1:25 p.m.

There are reports that two people are trapped inside the plane.

What you need to know about the Thunderbirds 

UPDATE @ 1:18 p.m.

There are reports of possible entrapment. The injured pilot is to go with CareFlight crew to the hospital, according to emergency scanner traffic.

Dayton Air Show: What to know about Dayton’s biggest air spectacle

UPDATE @ 1:10 p.m.

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base first responders have responded to Thunderbird jet crash at Dayton International Airport, according to base spokeswoman Marie Vanover.

UPDATE @ 1:05 p.m.

Medics have arrived on scene. An occupant of the plane has reportedly given medics a “Thumbs Up.”

Emergency scanner traffic indicates the ejection seat is still armed.

The aircraft is as safe as we can make it,” said fire crews on emergency scanners.

UPDATE @ 12:59 p.m.

Dayton Daily News photographer Ty Greenlees is on the scene. He reports photographer Ricardo von Puttkammer told him he saw the two-seat Thunderbird land and taxi toward the staging area when it appeared that a gust of wind flipped the F-16 on its top.

Von Puttkammer is chief correspondent for Aviation Photojournal in New York City.


UPDATE @ 12:56 p.m. 

A tow truck has been called to the scene. The plane went off the runway and is in the grass, according to emergency dispatchers.

A medical helicopter is unable to fly. A CareFlight ground unit is on the way to the air show. We are working to find out the extent of injuries.

UPDATE @ 12:43 p.m.

News Center 7’s John Bedell confirms a military plane is on its top. Law enforcement official confirms a Thunderbird jet on its top.

Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Brett Collar reports heavy rain in the area at that time. Rainfall rates in the vicinity exceeding two inches per hour, Collar said.

Dayton Air Show has Plan B if grassy lots turn muddy for motorists


There have been reports of a military plane crashing at the Dayton Air Show today at the Dayton International Airport, 3600 Terminal Drive.

An eye witness reports a Thunderbird F-16 coming in for landing, had slipped and wound up on its top. Rescue crews are on the scene. 

We are working to confirm more information and will update this report.

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Jennifer Aniston, Justin Theroux announce separation

Published: Thursday, February 15, 2018 @ 6:53 PM

Jennifer Aniston Through The Years

Jennifer Aniston and her husband, director Justin Theroux, are separating after two years of marriage.

The couple announced the separation in a statement to The Associated Press Thursday. 

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“Normally we would do this privately, but given that the gossip industry cannot resist an opportunity to speculate and invent, we wanted to convey the truth directly,” the statement released by Aniston’s publicist Stephen Huvane said. “Whatever else is printed about us that is not directly from us, is someone else’s fictional narrative. Above all, we are determined to maintain the deep respect and love that we have for one another.”

The announcement was made “in an effort to reduce any further speculation,” according to the statement.

People reported that Aniston and Theroux met in 2008 but started dating in 2011. Theroux proposed to Aniston on his 41st birthday in August 2012. 

The pair had a surprise wedding in 2015, weeks before Theroux turned 44. 

According to People, the couple had been spending time apart. Aniston celebrated her 49th birthday without Theroux, but was with Courteney Cox and other friends in Los Angeles. Theroux was seen in New York.

Huvane  told The AP the decision to separate “was mutual and lovingly made at the end of last year.” The couple has no children.

This was the first marriage for Theroux. He dated hair stylist Heidi Bivens for 14 years before they spit in 2011. Aniston was married to Brad Pitt from 2000 to 2005.

As for the future, Aniston and Theroux said they are “two best friends who have decided to part ways as a couple, but look forward to continuing our cherished friendship.”

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WATCH: Florida school shooting survivors perform emotional song at CNN town hall

Published: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 2:12 AM

Shooter Reportedly In Custody In Florida High School Shooting

Survivors of last week's deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida, performed an emotional song Wednesday night to close a CNN town hall on gun control.

>> Watch the clip here

According to CNN, members of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Drama Club wrote and performed the song, "Shine," at the event at the BB&T Center in Sunrise.

>> Marco Rubio faces a tough crowd during CNN's town hall for gun reform

"You're not gonna knock us down / We'll get back up again / You may have hurt us but I promise we are stronger and / We're not gonna let you win / We're putting up a fight / You may have brought the dark / But together we will shine a light," the chorus says.

Minutes earlier, Max Schachter read a poem titled "Life Is Like a Rollercoaster" by his son, Alex, who was killed in the shooting. 

>> Watch the reading here

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The tributes followed a heated town hall moderated by CNN's Jake Tapper and featuring lawmakers from Florida, including Democratic Rep. Ted Deutch, Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson and Republican Sen. Marco Rubio. National Rifle Association spokeswoman Dana Loesch also participated in the event.

Victims of the Florida High School Mass Shooting

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Alleged Florida high school shooter has $800,000 inheritance, reports say

Published: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 @ 5:23 PM

Reportedly Alleged Florida High School Shooter Has $800,000 Inheritance

The alleged gunman in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting last week in Parkland, Fla., has an inheritance from his adoptive parents worth $800,000, according to news outlets.

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But Nikolas Cruz, 19, who now has a public defender at taxpayer expense as his attorney in his murder case, cannot access the money until he turns 22, the Miami Herald reported.

Cruz was charged with 17 counts of murder last Thursday, a day after allegedly opening fire inside the high school with an assault-style rifle.

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The large amount of money could prompt a judge to review the estate and possibly make the money accessible for Cruz’s defense.

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The Public Defender’s Office asked a judge Tuesday to review the inheritance, the Herald reported,  to help determine if any of the money can be used in his defense.

The court filing specifically asked the judge to “determine whether the defendant is indigent.”

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Cruz is charged with 17 counts of murder in the deaths of 14 students and three adults, including teachers, in the deadly rampage at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Valentine’s Day. More than a dozen others were injured in the massacre.

Cruz was caught shortly after the shooting in nearby Coral Springs, Fla., and taken into custody without incident.

He’s jailed without bond.

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Marco Rubio faces a tough crowd during CNN's town hall for gun reform

Published: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 12:01 AM

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student Cameron Kasky asks a question to Sen. Marco Rubio during a CNN town hall meeting at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Fla., Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018. Rubio was put on the defensive Wednesday by angry students, teachers and parents who are demanding stronger gun-control measures after the shooting rampage that claimed 17 lives at a Florida high school. (Michael Laughlin/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP)
Michael Laughlin/AP
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student Cameron Kasky asks a question to Sen. Marco Rubio during a CNN town hall meeting at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Fla., Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018. Rubio was put on the defensive Wednesday by angry students, teachers and parents who are demanding stronger gun-control measures after the shooting rampage that claimed 17 lives at a Florida high school. (Michael Laughlin/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP)(Michael Laughlin/AP)

During CNN’s Wednesday night town hall with Florida lawmakers, survivors of last week’s high school shooting and members of the NRA, Sen. Marco Rubio attempted to explain why a ban on assault rifles wouldn’t have prevented the tragedy, and the audience’s reaction was not quite what he was hoping for.

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While explaining what a ban on assault rifles would do, the Republican senator from Florida said to ensure no one would “get around it.”

“You would literally have to ban every semi-automatic rifle that’s sold in America.” A surprised Rubio, who appeared to have been hoping to convince the audience against such an idea, was met with a solid 10 seconds of applause that overwhelmed the room.

“Fair enough, fair enough,” the senator said as the cheers died down.

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The moment came just after a grieving father called Rubio’s reaction to the mass shooting “pathetically weak” and asked whether the senator would support banning assault rifles like Nikolas Cruz’s AR-15 in order to save the lives of children.

“It’s too easy to get. It is a weapon of war,” the father emotionally said. “The fact that you can’t stand with everybody else in this building and say that, I’m sorry.”

A flustered Rubio assured him, “I do believe what you’re saying is true,” before launching into his argument against an assault rifles ban.

>> Related: Alleged Florida high school shooter has $800,000 inheritance, reports say

CNN’s town hall follows last week’s shooting at Marjory Stonemason Douglas High School where gunman Nikolas Cruz fatally shot 17 people and injured over a dozen more. In the time since, many of the school’s surviving students have been commanding public attention and demanding a conversation about gun reform in the United States.

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