C-130 aircraft is already in the area where the fighter crashed – Looking for the 31-year-old captain, the 29-year-old co-pilot was found dead
Searches will continue throughout the night in the area where the Phantom F-4 fighter crashed south of Andravida, in order to locate the pilot of the fatal fighter. It’s about the squadron leader Efstathio Tsitlakidiswhile earlier it was announced that the co-pilot, lieutenant commander, is dead Marios-Michael Turoutsikas.
Already, a C-130 aircraft is in the area with flare bombs, and along with a Navy helicopter and an Air Force SUPER PUMA, will continue the search in shifts throughout the night, as will Coast Guard vessels.
The fighter went down at 10.30 in the morning, while flying with another aircraft of the same type. Despite the initial information, the two pilots of the fatal aircraft did not succeed – they did not have time to use the ejection mechanism of their seats. The fighters were on a training flight, flying at an extremely low altitude – about 500 feet.
An alarm was immediately raised and air and sea means rushed to the disputed area of the fall. Shortly before 12.30 noon, the first wreckage of the fatal Phantom was spotted. At approximately 4:00 p.m., in an official announcement, the General Air Staff announced the death of Mariou-Michael Turoutsika.
The announcement was as follows: On Monday, January 30, 2023, at 10:30 a.m., a two-seater F-4 Phantom II aircraft of the 338th Squadron of the 117th Fighter Wing, which was performing a training flight, crashed into the sea area 25 nautical miles south of Andravidas airport, resulting in the fatal injury of the co-pilot, Sub-Commander (I) Marios – Michael Turoutsika, 29 years old, while investigations continue for the captain, Comman (I) Efstathio Tsitlakidis, 31 years old.
By decision of the Minister of National Defense Nikos Panagiotopoulos three days of mourning was declared in the Armed Forces. In particular, by order of the Minister of National Defense Mr. Nikolaos Panagiotopoulos, a three-day military mourning period is declared in the Armed Forces, from today until February 2, 2023, after the tragic event that occurred in the morning, as a result of which Lt. Gen. (I) Marios lost his life – Michael Turoutsikas.
Regarding the crash of the F-4E Phantom II fighter jet, the Minister of National Defense stated:
“While the search for the captain continues, we express our sadness and grief at the loss of the co-pilot after the fighter jet crashed during a training activity in Andravida.
Our thoughts are with the family of the flying Lieutenant Commander, to whom we express our support and our sincere condolences”.
At the same time, however, that the investigations for the two pilots were underway in the Ionian Sea, Turkish fighters continued provocations with violations and violations of national airspace.
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