Officials have confirmed one dead in the crash of a Geico Skytypers AT-6 during a practice session at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport in Pennsylvania. The team was practicing for the upcoming Great Pocono Raceway Airshow on Saturday. By late Friday, authorities had identified the pilot/sole occupant as Andy Travnicek, of Hampton, New Hampshire. Travnicek was a former C-5 Galaxy pilot in the Air Force, and he had a wealth of flying experience. He was a first officer at a major U.S. airline.
There were no immediate signs of what went wrong. Reports say that Travnicek’s plane was making a pass when for unknown reasons it suddenly went off course, crashed in the grass and caught fire.
In 2018, the Skytypers lost another one of its team members when Ken Johansen was killed in a crash of one of the team AT-6s in Long Island during a practice session.
In a press release, the Geico Skytypers team wrote that it was cooperating with the FAA, NTSB and local authorities in the investigation into Friday’s crash.