4 killed in plane crash at Alaska military base
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Last Updated: Thursday, July 29, 2010, 21:14
Elmendorf Air Force Base (US): Four airmen were killed in a cargo plane that crashed during a training run at an Air Force base, military authorities said on Thursday.

The crash sent a fireball hundreds of feet into the air, witnesses said. Three of the men were in the Alaska Air National Guard and the fourth was on active duty at Elmendorf Air Force Base, Air Force Col. John McMullen said. Their names have not been released pending notification of relatives.

"We lost four members of our Arctic Warrior family and it's a loss felt across our entire joint installation," McMullen said in a statement, referring to Elmendorf and its adjacent Army base, Fort Richardson.

The C-17 was from the 3rd Wing, based at Elmendorf near downtown Anchorage. The crash happened about 6:14 pm (local time) during a training demonstration for an upcoming weekend air show, Lt. Gen. Dana Atkins said.

Anchorage Fire Dept. Captain Bryan Grella said his crew was just finishing dinner at about 6:30 p.m. at the downtown fire station when something caught his eye.

"It was a big, gray plume of smoke, and I saw a fireball go up in it," he said. The fireball extended about more than 200 meters in the air, he estimated.

The crash is the second in Anchorage this summer. In June, one child was killed and four others burned when a small plane crashed after taking off from the city's small-airplane airport downtown.


First Published: Thursday, July 29, 2010, 21:14

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