Matuchkin

Why does nobody care about dead pilots?

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It seems to happen quite often, at airshows and test flights: one second, it's an F-18 hornet. The next second, it's a ball of flame, along with four others that were flying along with it. My chemistry teacher literally saw a deHavilland Dragonfly plow into a lake as it tried to pitch up from a dive.

And yet, when that happens, no one gives a crap about the pilots. Videos of the event are usually formatted as fail compilations, or just "so this happened" events. The news doesn't really mention names. When a Tu-144 folded in half in an airshow in Paris, the pilots were probably in complete agony, and yet I couldn't find any info on them. Or take a look at any video that displays a small error-gone-wild in an airshow; the pilots there are (were) what, 30 years old? They probably were extremely frantic as they were trying to stabilise their plane, and were utterly conscious in the moments before the crash, and yet, they ended up being pulverised, or turned into meat jerky, or worse- getting thrown out of the canopy, arms flailing and screaming for their lives.

So what's up with this nonchalant attitude towards them? Why does no one make an effort to at least remember these pilots?

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I think that you're just not hanging around the places where people do remember them.  I've seen many times where aviation communities talk about these crashes and the pilots involved.

B-17 Sally B:

Spoiler

B-17_Sally_B_1a_(6114424384).jpg

Note the number 3 engine cowling.

Edited by razark
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Why does nobody care about dead ________?

I think we've become numb to the constant barrage of nightly spectacular and deadly news stories.  I don't particularly see pilots as a special class.  Rather, we don't really care much about anyone who died last week.  It's probably (as you have noted) because it seems to happen so often (news barrage) that we've grown accustomed to forgetting about it once the next day's horrific event has been televised.  ...and maybe the airplane stories stand out more to you, cuz you like airplanes. 

Not a particularly flattering reflection on society.

Edited by XLjedi
removed white space
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It depends, really. Much the same that you probably won't follow every hearse that happen to pass you by to the cemetry and help those left behind, those pilots are actually well-remembered within the circle, so the air force (if they're a member of), families, and the event organizer or something. It's just that you've come across it being so far away from it.

But yeah. When you're dead, all you left on the world is info on how you died and statistics. Not much else.

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They all died doing what they loved, knew the danger and were willing to take the risk.  They probably wouldn't want everyone to dwell on it, but definitely to learn from it.

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I've had the pleasure of spending time around the airshow performers, doing communications setup and maintenance. They're a very close- knit group and take care of each other, but they also know how to let go and move on when one of them dies. I guess they have to be that way, since it's such a high- risk undertaking and dwelling on it might undermine their confidence.

Best,
-Slashy

 

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On 12/14/2017 at 12:30 PM, Matuchkin said:

When a Tu-144 folded in half in an airshow in Paris, the pilots were probably in complete agony, and yet I couldn't find any info on them.

The crew actually died on the impact of the front section.

Here are some picture of the impact area:

Spoiler

 

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The "rebuilt" frame at one of Le Bourget hangars:

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One of my grandfather was still engaged in the French National Gendarmerie on this day, and was sent on the crash site (less than a year later he went to the forest of Ermenonville, where Turkish 981 went down). For both of the cases he nearly never told us anything about, as he simply didn't want to think about what he saw there.

Anyway, for 77102 the peoples on the ground were "lucky" that it happen on a Sunday, as the Tu-144 rear section impacted a school (still killing 8 children, but it could have been worse on a week day).

Here is an "artifact" of the aircraft, an ashtray from one of the first class passenger seat which can be seen just under the model. My grandpa found it on the site some days after the disaster.

qAWCkLM.jpg

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Someone in my family worked many many years in the civil air patrol doing their best to try and find any survivors if a plane had crashed in their county. I asked him how many people he has saved doing this job and he replied with “none.” And we left it at that. Was quite depressing, this thread reminded me of that. 

Maybe it’s just happened so much and been so fatal we just kind of let these things be. There was risk, it hit you, now you’re gone. Really damn sad. Nothing we could do, so we left it. 

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