Texas pilot killed in Iowa air show crash

Texas pilot killed in Iowa air show crash

September 2nd, 2012 by Associated Press in Local Regional News

DAVENPORT, Iowa - A Texas pilot was killed when his plane crashed during an air show in eastern Iowa, authorities said Sunday.

Glenn A. Smith, of Frisco, Texas, was flying a Soviet-era retired military jet in the Quad-City Air Show in Davenport when the crash occurred, the Quad-City Times reported. Authorities said the jet was flying in formation with other members of the HopperFlight jet team when it failed to pull out of a 45-degree bank and crashed into a field north of Interstate 80 about 1:25 p.m. Saturday.

Assistant Davenport Police Chief Don Schaeffer said at a news conference Saturday that the plane flew directly into the ground.

"He never had an opportunity to come out of it," he said.

Nobody on the ground was hurt, but crowds watching the show saw the plane go down and erupt in flames.

Davenport police and federal investigators planned to comb the field Saturday for widely scattered wreckage from the plane.

Schaeffer estimated parts of the plane were strewn over an area up to 220 yards, or a tenth of a mile. Schaeffer said he had no information about what may have caused the crash.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating.

Smith was CEO of the Warbird Educational Foundation that owned the Soviet-era jet he was flying.

A squadron of planes flew over the crash site Sunday in the "missing man" formation before the air show continued.