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Fri, Jul 11, 2003

CAF Heinkel Down, Destroyed

Both Pilots Lost

The CAF's HE-111 Heinkel bomber, the only one of its type left flying, crashed in Cheyenne (WY), enroute to an appearance at the Montana Airfest 2003. Both pilots, the only two known to be on board, perished in the crash. The aircraft went down after flying from its home in Midland (TX), impacting a building under construction, at approximately 1300 local time.

Airshow staffers became worried when the aircraft did not arrive on time, shortly before learning that it had gone down. The aircraft reportedly went through a chain-link fence before hitting the construction area and the building within. Observers on the scene describe the damage as "a total loss," and noted that a heavy fire required an hour of effort from local fire fighters before it could be brought under control.

Local media reports quote witnesses claiming that the aircraft was making a "sputtering sound' shortly before the accident transpired. The construction area was staffed by only a single person at the time of the accident, but no injuries were reported.

Nicknamed the "Blitz Bomber," the Heinkel was the German Air Force's first modern medium bomber, and was used in numerous nighttime bombing missions against London.


CAF's Official Statement on the Loss of the HE-111

A Commemorative Air Force (CAF) operated twin-engine World War II German Heinkel He 111 bomber crashed at approximately 1:10 p.m.(Mountain Standard Time) on July 10, 2003, near the Cheyenne Municipal Airport, Cheyenne, Wyo. The plane was on final approach when the pilot reported an engine failure. After impacting the ground, it skidded into the Laramie County Independent School District school bus wash facility. The pilot and copilot, the only occupants of the airplane, were killed. Both the building and plane were destroyed by the post- accident fire.

Based in Mesa, Ariz., and operated by the Arizona Wing of the CAF, the aircraft departed CAF Headquarters in Midland, Texas, Thursday morning at 10:30 a.m. (Central Standard Time) en route to an airshow in Montana.

The Heinkel He 111 was initially designed as a transport aircraft and was first flown in 1935. The modified bomber version was used extensively in the Spanish Civil War and in World War II. It was technologically advanced for its time and was faster than most single engine fighters. In 1941, the Spanish government acquired a license to build the airplane at its CASA plant in Tablada, Spain.

The CAF's aircraft was a Spanish built version of the He 111 and was officially designated a CASA 2111. The CAF purchased the aircraft in England in 1977. According to Denis Bergstrom, editor of Gallant Warriors, the CAF's He 111 (CASA 2111) was the last flyable aircraft of its type.

**   Report created 7/11/2003   Record 5   **
IDENTIFICATION
  Regis#: 72615        Make/Model: CASA      Description: 1952 CASA 2.111, H111 EXHIBIT
  Date: 07/10/2003     Time: 1910
  Event Type: Accident   Highest Injury: Fatal     Mid Air: N    Missing: N
  Damage: Destroyed
LOCATION
  City: CHEYENNE   State: WY   Country: US
DESCRIPTION
  AMERICAN AIRPOWER HERITAGE FLYING MUSEUM, 1952 CASA 2.111 ACFT, LOST AN ENGINE AND CRASHED 2 NM SE OF THE CHEYENNE AIRPORT, TWO PERSONS ON BOARD WERE FATALLY INJURED AND THE ACFT WAS DESTROYED, CHEYENNE, WY
INJURY DATA      Total Fatal:   2
                 # Crew:  2     Fat:   2     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:   
                 # Pass:   0     Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:   
                 # Grnd:         Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:   
WEATHER: SPECI KCYS 10194Z 02012G15KT 10SM CLR 29/01 A3031
OTHER DATA
  Activity: Business      Phase: Landing      Operation: General Aviation
  Departed: MIDLAND, TX                 Dep Date: 07/10/2003   Dep. Time: 1030
  Destination: MISSOULA, MT             Flt Plan: NONE         Wx Briefing: N
  Last Radio Cont: 2 NM SE CYS ARPT
  Last Clearance: CLRD TO LAND
  FAA FSDO: CASPER, WY  (NM04)                    Entry date: 07/11/2003

FMI: www.confederateairforce.org

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