It was a tragic weekend for air shows as three fatal accidents occurred, killing a wingwalker and solo aerobatics performer in the U.S. and a member of the Royal Air Force’s Red Arrows at a show in England. On Sunday, wingwalker Todd Green was trying to perform his signature transfer from a wing to the skid of a helicopter when he fell about 200 feet to his death at the Selfridge Air Show near Detroit. Green was a close friend of Kyle Franklin. whose wingwalking wife Amanda died earlier this year from burns suffered in a crash in March.”It’s really tragic,” Franklin told reporters. “We are not thrill seekers trying to cheat death. We love what we do. We all know the risks involved.” On Saturday, Red Arrows pilot Flt. Lt. Jon Egging died after a low-level ejection in his Hawk aircraft at the Bournemouth Air Show and Bryan Jensen was killed when his highly modified Pitts Special, called The Beast, crashed on the field at the Kansas City Aviation Expo Air Show.
Egging was in formation with the Red Arrows when he split from the others and called a Mayday. Witnesses said he maneuvered the small jet trainer away from populated areas. His body was found face down in a river, not far from the wreckage of his aircraft. His wife and other members of his family attended the air show. Egging is being hailed as a hero. Jensen, a Delta Airlines 747 pilot, had been performing in air shows for 15 years. The aircraft, which had a modified Russian radial engine boosted to 412 horsepower, impacted vertically and caught fire.