Missing Man Formation flyover to honor fallen 115th pilot
MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - A pair of National Guard fighter squadrons will conduct a special flyover to honor the 115th Fighter Wing pilot who lost his life in a crash in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan late last year.
F-16 pilots with the 115th’s wing’s 176th Fighter Squadron will be joined by their counterparts from the Oregon Air National Guard’s 123rd Fighter Squadron, flying F-15s, will fly in the missing man formation this weekend as an aerial salute to Maj. Durwood “Hawk” Jones.
According to the Wisconsin National Guard, the flyover will happen over Truax Field, at Dane County Regional Airport, Saturday, April 17, at 11:30 a.m., during a memorial service for Jones.
The 123rd Fighter Squadron is participating the tribute to support the 115th and show solidarity with them because Jones’ brother flies F-15s for that unit, the National Guard explained.
The flyover will be streamed on the 115th Fighter Wing’s Facebook page and people should be able to see it from public vantage points. The memorial service itself is for 115th Fighter Wing and family only.
The missing man formation, which honors fallen pilots, includes four planes flying in a “V” formation. The flight leader then pulls out of formation while the rest of the team continues until they are out of sight. With the flight leader breaking formation, it leaves an empty space “in honor of the fallen pilot and representing their departure to the heavens.”
Two American flags will be on board the fighters during the tribute. After the ceremony they will be presented to Jones’ children.
Jones died when his F-16 went down around 8 p.m., December 8, during a training mission in a remote area of the Hiawatha National Forest, in the northeastern corner of the Delta Co. His body was found two days
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