STUART | One person has been confirmed to have died in a plane crash at the Stuart Airshow in Florida, with the opening two days of the airshow cancelled.
Martin County Sheriff’s Office, MCFR on scene of plane crash at Whitham Field. No further information available at this time. pic.twitter.com/ddFLASnAb6
— MartinCountySheriff (@MartinFLSheriff) November 1, 2019
The OV-1 Mohawk came down at 13:15 on Friday 1st November, just hours before the scheduled start of the Stuart Airshow at 17:00 on the same day. The Mohawk is a two-seat observation and attack aircraft designed by Grumman. Introduced in 1950, it was retired in 1996.
The crash occured during a practice flight for the airshow. The pilot, Joe Masessa, who also owned the aircraft, did not survive. He was the only person on board. The plane was adorned with the names of US troops missing in action in the Vietnam War.
The Stuart Airshow said: “Due to an unfortunate incident today, the Audi Stuart Air Show’s night time air show and TD Bank Dirty Flight Suit Party have been cancelled for this evening, Friday, November 1, 2019. We are working to reschedule this event for after tomorrow’s airshow, Saturday, November 2, 2019. At this time, the remainder of the weekend’s event will resume as planned.”
Saturday’s show was later cancelled due to poor weather. Friday and Saturday tickets will be accepted on Sunday, the organisers said.
The Stuart Airshow is one of the last major airshows of the season, and is due to run from Friday evening until Sunday.