UPDATE: Scroll Down for More Minot Air Force Base Deaths
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Remember the one about the B-52 bomber that, according to legend, had six nuclear weapons loaded onto it by accident, which, of course, could not have happened—by accident—for a dozen different reasons, or more.
Airman 1st Class Todd Blue was assigned to the unit that provides security for that bomber wing at Minot Air Force base. He died while on leave in Virginia. No further details have been released.
Was he on duty when those nuclear weapons were loaded onto the B-52, “by accident”? If anyone has any further information on this, please let me know.
I expected to see many more deaths of Minot and Barksdale Air Force personnel in the wake of this incident.
Have I missed any others?
Authorities are investigating the death of a Minot Air Force Base airman who died while on leave in Virginia.
Base officials say 20-year-old Airman 1st Class Todd Blue died Monday while visiting family members in Wytheville, Virginia.
Blue enlisted in the Air Force in March of last year and joined the 5th Security Forces at Minot Air Force Base the following August.
Information on how Blue died has not been released.
September 15, 2007
By John Andrew Prime
Caddo Parish sheriff’s deputies worked a wreck this morning in which two people from Barksdale Air Force Base were killed.
The accident, in the 5100 block of Shreveport-Blanchard Highway at 11:30 a.m., claimed the lives of a married couple. Their names have not been released, but the man was 29 and the woman was 32, according to a release from Caddo Parish sheriff’s spokeswoman Cindy Chadwick.
The two were riding a 2007 Harley-Davidson motorcycle, with the husband driving and the wife the passenger, Chadwick said.
“They were traveling behind a northbound Pontiac Aztec driven by Erica Jerry, 35, of Shreveport,” Chadwick’s release said. “Jerry initiated a left turn into a business parking lot at the same time the man driving the motorcycle attempted to pass her van on the left in a no passing zone. They collided.”
The woman passenger on the motorcycle died at the scene, while the husband was taken to LSU Hospital in Shreveport, where he died, the release said.
Further information on the victims is pending notification of their next-of-kin by Barksdale officials, the release said.
Related? Authorities Identify Minot Airman Killed in Crash
Jul 5 2007 6:42AM
Minot, N.D. (AP) Authorities have identified a Minot Air Force Base man killed in a crash on the outskirts of Minot.
Base officials say 20-year-old Adam Barrs was a passenger in a vehicle that failed to negotiate a curve, hit an approach, hit a tree and started on fire late Tuesday night.
Barrs was pronounced dead at the scene.
The driver is identified as 20-year-old Airman Stephen Garrett.
He was taken to Minot’s Trinity Hospital in critical condition.
Related? Bomber Pilot Killed in Crash
Jul 20, 2007 – 04:04:10 CDT
MINOT (AP) – A Minot Air Force Base bomber pilot was killed in a motorcycle crash in Tennessee, the base says.
1st Lt. Weston Kissel, 28, was a B-52 pilot assigned to the 23rd Bomb Wing at the Minot base, said Lt. Col. Gerald Hounchell, the 23rd Bomb Squadron commander. Kissel died Tuesday in the crash, while on leave, the base said.
Kissel, a native of Tennessee, graduated from the Air Force Academy in 2004, and arrived at the Minot base in July last year, the base said.
Story Published: Sep 10, 2007 at 8:13 AM PDT
Story Updated: Sep 10, 2007 at 8:13 AM PDT
By Associated Press
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – The body of a missing Air Force captain from Florida has been found near Badger Peak in northeast Skamania County, Wash., Portland police said Sunday.
Acting on a tip from Portland police, Skamania County authorities found Capt. John Frueh’s rental car about noon on Saturday. They quickly began a search and rescue mission and, with the help of search dogs, found Frueh’s body near the vehicle about 5 p.m., the Skamania County Sheriff’s Office said.
Authorities said foul play is not suspected.
Skamania County is located in south-central Washington along the Columbia River Gorge, a popular spot for hiking and other outdoor activities.
Frueh, 33, came to Portland late last month to attend a friend’s wedding. He last spoke with family on Aug. 30.
The officer who commands an air force wing in Alaska has died of a gunshot wound that likely was self-inflicted, authorities said Monday.
Brig. Gen. Thomas L. Tinsley suffered a gunshot wound to his chest late Sunday night and was pronounced dead within a half hour, said Col. Richard Walberg, who assumed command at Elmendorf Air Force Base after Tinsley’s death.
The weapon was likely a handgun, Walberg said.
Medical responders who rushed to Tinsley’s home on base were unable to save him. Tinsley’s wife and college-age daughter were home at the time.
Tinsley was named base commander in May 2007. He had served as an F-15 instructor pilot, F-15C test pilot, wing weapons officer, exchange officer and instructor with the Royal Australian Air Force.
His previous 22-month assignment was executive officer to the Air Force chief of staff, Gen. T. Michael “Buzz” Mosely, who resigned in June under pressure in an agency shake-up.
Mosely, the Air Force military chief, and Air Force Secretary Michael W. Wynne, the agency’s civilian head, were held accountable for failing to fully correct an erosion of nuclear-related performance standards. One concern was a cross-country flight in August of a B-52 carrying armed nuclear weapons.
Walberg said Tinsley was not under investigation or undue stress.
“As far as stress, sir, this job, by nature of being an Air Force officer in a nation at war, is stressful,” he said. “Undue stress, no.”
Representatives of the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology will do a report and declare whether Tinsley’s cause of death was suicide, Walberg said. Such reports take about 30 days.
The body of a missile combat crew commander from the Minot Air Force was found by police and the cause of his death is under investigation, the Air Force says.
A statement issued by the base Sunday said the body of Capt. Jonathan Bayless, 28, was found Friday night. Police did not give details but said it was in an area north of the city soccer complex and they are awaiting autopsy results.
Col. Christopher Ayres, the base’s 91st Missile Wing commander, said Bayless was a training chief with the 91st Operations Support Squadron. He had been at the Minot Air Force Base since March 2005.
Bayless went on active duty in May 2003, the statement said. Base officials did not list his hometown but said he had been assigned earlier to Vandenberg Air Force Base for missile combat crew member training.
”The 91st Missile Wing has lost not only a valuable member of our team, but a member of our family, and he will be missed.” Ayres said in the statement.
The Air Force said casualty assistance officers and unit members are helping Bayless’ family and a memorial service is being planned.
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