Sun, Sep 09, 2012
Airshow Practice Flight Goes Awry... Warbird Community Stunned
Its been a mean vicious few weeks for the aviation community as a number of beloved flyers have been hurt or killed by a number of tragic circumstances.... and it seems that fate has claimed a major name in the warbird community.
Famed warbird pilot and craftsman, Bob Odegaard -- one of the men responsible for the formation of the Fargo Air Museum and the Fargo AirSho -- was practicing for a weekend airshow when his Super Corsair went down Friday evening. Odegaard was 66 years old and came from Kindred, ND, where he had developed a world-wide rep as a master craftsman of war-era aircraft and an expert pilot, to boot.
The Super Corsair was in the process of flying in preparation for the upcoming weekend airshow when the accident occurred at the Barnes County Municipal Airport about 1800, local time, Friday.
While some reports differ and the general media descriptions are of little technical detail, a number of witnesses report that Odegaard was in the process of flying a barrel roll when the aircraft impacted the ground.
The scheduled airshow in Valley City, ND, has been canceled, and Dennis Helland, Barnes County Airport Authority chairman, has told media entities that, "Couple other planes got damaged from the shrapnel coming out of the airplane, and people that are scheduled to perform tomorrow don't want to fly."
Odegaard's 1945 Super Corsair was reportedly one of only two such examples of the breed still flying and photographs show the aircraft, post-impact, pretty thoroughly destroyed.
Officials hope that the airshow can be rescheduled at a future date, when pilots "feel like flying again' and in memory of Odegaard.
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