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Fri, Jul 22, 2005

Navy Confirms Missing Naval Aviator Died in Super Hornet Crash

Two Super Hornets based at Naval Air Station Lemoore experienced a mid-air collision while on a routine training mission July 18, killing one naval aviator and injuring two.

Lt. Bruce L. Clark of Orange Park, Fla., 31, died in the incident.

Lt. Noel Sawatzky and Lt. John Bonenfant were recovered by search and rescue crews July 18; they are currently in the Kern Medical Center in Bakersfield, Calif., and were reported in fair condition.

The mishap occurred in a remote training area about 35 nautical miles northeast of Ridgecrest, Calif., over Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake.

The aircraft involved were an F/A-18E (single seat) and an F/A-18F (two seat) Super Hornet from Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 122. No live ordnance was aboard.

The cause of the incident is under investigation.

FMI: www.navy.mil

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