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The victims were identified by the Air Force Sunday as Scot Ames Jr, 24, an American Air Force Instructor, and a student from the Japanese Air Self Defense Force.
Ames was a pilot with the 50th Training Squadron at Columbus Air Force Base in Columbus, Missouri.
The Air Force did not identify the student from the Japanese Air Self Defense Force, as it will be provided “according to Japan’s established process,” a statement from the 14th Flying Training Wing said.
The T-38 trainer jet assigned to the 14th Flying Training Wing crashed at about 5:30 p.m., according to a statement from the Air Force.
Taggart said the plane took off from Columbus, Mississippi and was on its way to Tallahassee, Florida before crashing adjacent to the airport. The 14th Flying Training Wing is based at Columbus Air Force Base.
Commercial flight operations were not disrupted due to the crash, Taggart said.
A safety investigation board will convene to investigate the accident, according to the Air Force.
“We are a close-knit family and the loss of our teammates affects us all,” Col. Seth Graham, 14th Flying Training Wing commander, said in a press conference Saturday at Columbus’ Wing Headquarters. “The strength of our bond is what will help us get through it together. My thoughts and prayers are with their families, friends and our teammates today.”
The cause of the incident is under investigation.
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