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One Dead in F-4 Crash

May 22, 1987

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) _ An Air Force F-4 Phantom jet crashed into a lake today, killing the pilot and critically injuring another crewman, authorities said.

Divers found the body of the pilot in the wreckage of the plane, said Charlie McCafferty of the Fort Worth Fire Department. The man’s identity was not immediately released.

The flier who ejected was taken to Harris Methodist Hospital by helicopter, said Tommy Ryan, another fire department spokesman. Hospital officials said he was in critical condition. His identity also was not disclosed.

Carswell Air Force Base officials said the plane went down in Lake Worth about 10:10 a.m. while returning to its base from a training mission at Fort Sill, Okla.

″It was in a flight of three. It was the lead aircraft. They were returning from an air-to-ground range mission up at Falcon Gunnery Range,″ said Carswell spokeswoman Jane Coats. She said the jet was making its final approach when it went into the lake.

Ryan said few details were known and fire department officials were investigating.

″At the present time we have no indication of what happened,″ Ryan said. The weather at the time was clear.

″All of a sudden we heard a loud explosion sort of like a sonic boom, only much louder, then it was total silence,″ said Ruth Crow, a witness. ″And of course we looked up and we saw some smoke rising in the air. And then we didn’t see any smoke at all.″

The F-4 was from the 301st tactical fighter wing at Carswell, Ms. Miller said.

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