Student pilot, instructor killed in Air Force jet crash near Montgomery, Ala. airport

Columbus Air Force Base holds news conference after 2 pilots killed in crash near Montgomery

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Columbus Air Force Base 14th Flying Training Wing Commander Col. Seth Graham said a student pilot and instructor pilot died in the T-38 trainer jet crash near Montgomery Regional Airport Friday evening

“I know that I speak for the entire 14th Flying Training Wing that we are grieving right there with you,” said Graham.

Graham said in a news conference the pilots were flying a training mission at the time of the crash.

The crash happened around 5:30 p.m. The jet was assigned to the 14th Flying Training Wing at Columbus Air Force Base in Columbus, Miss.

Graham said the flight wasn’t unusual. Every weekend, student pilots are sent to do a “cross-country training mission.”

Montgomery Regional Airport Executive Director Marshall Taggart Jr. the crash site was in a wooded area near but not on the airport’s property in the area of Lamar Road and Selma Highway. That’s about 15 miles southwest of the downtown Montgomery area.

There are houses in the area, including a mobile home park, but Taggart said the jet did not hit any structures.

Taggart said the jet was flying from Columbus to Tallahassee, Fla. at the time of the crash. However, Graham said it he is not positive where the plane was heading.

The pilots’ families have been notified, but Graham said the names of the pilots will not be released at this time out of respect for the families.

The Air Force will be investigating the crash.

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