Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Up in the Air Military Air Shows Are Grand, but at What Cost?

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Up in the Air Military Air Shows Are Grand, but at What Cost?

Article excerpt

Two crashes Thursday of American military aircraft, participating in or practicing for fly-bys, one of which killed a pilot, call into sharp question the wisdom of such events.

One of six F-16s participating in a Thunderbird fly-over of the commencement ceremony of the U.S. Air Force Academy at Colorado Springs, Colo., attended by President Barack Obama, crashed. The Air Force pilot ejected successfully and no one on the ground was killed or injured. An F-16 costs $47 million.

One of six F/A-18s practicing for Blue Angel participation in the upcoming Great Tennessee Air Show crashed near Smyrna, Tenn., on Thursday. Killed was the pilot, Marine Capt. Jeff Kuss, a husband and the father of two children. An F-18 costs $65 million.

The thrill of seeing a show by the Thunderbirds or the Blue Angels cannot be denied. …

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