‘Everything was on fire,’ witnesses describe chaotic moments after Navy training plane crash

Around the South

FOLEY, Ala. (WKRG) — The U.S. Navy continues to investigate after a training aircraft crashed into a neighborhood in Baldwin County.

Crews went through the crash site all Saturday, and will remain at the site all evening as the investigation continues.

“You heard a big thump and the house shake,” said Andy Price.

Price was at home Friday afternoon on Mansion Street, when he heard something outside.

“I ran outside and as soon as I get outside, just right across the street it was pretty much already engulfed,” said Price.

A Navy trainer aircraft crashed into the front yard of the home right across the street from him.

“It was on fire, everything was on fire, the house the cars, the whole plane,” said Price.

The area around his home is still blocked off, as Navy officials continue to investigate. He spoke with WKRG Saturday afternoon via video chat. “They pretty much have got the neighborhood blocked off,” he explained.

Kenny Fowler and his family live behind the home. His wife and children had just gotten home less than 10 minutes before the crash.

“Heard a massive boom, actually heard a sound, it sounded like a car crash according to them. Came out and saw black smoke billowing, you know, yards from the house really,” said Fowler.

According to the Navy, two crew members died while on a routine training flight.

A Coast Guard officer has been identified as one who died in the plane crash on Friday. Ensign Morgan Garrett of Waxhaw, North Carolina, was in the U.S Coast Guard. Waxhaw is located south of Charlotte.

The second person involved in Friday’s crash has been identified by the Navy as Lt. Rhiannon Ross from Wixom, Michigan.

Ross, 30, an instructor pilot, and Garrett, 24, a student aviator, took off from Naval Air Station Whiting Field, Milton, Florida, on a training flight.

Crews continue to piece together what went wrong.

“He’s within 100 feet from six or seven houses, for that plane to land where it did is pretty much a miracle,” said Price.

The U.S. Navy investigation team is asking anyone with footage or photos of the aircraft in flight or any additional information to call Lieutenant Freeman at 864-608-0729. Also if you find debris from the aircraft leave it undisturbed and call LT Freeman.


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