Report released on crash that killed retired ex-RAF Halton Wing Commander in America

Brian North
Brian North

An initial report into a plane crash that killed a retired RAF Wing Commander has been released.

Brian North, 72, was flying a replica First World War SE5a bi-plane fighter aircraft in Colorado, USA, that he had built in his Aylesbury garage, on November 21 when the fatal accident occurred.

The report, from the US National Transportation Safety Board, says when Mr North’s plane took off from the Front Range Airport at 1.55pm local time, people noticed it was climbing at a slow rate.

He requested to come back into land, but while preparing to do so a witness saw the plane enter a spiral descent.

The plane crashed in a wheat field about 0.7 miles north of the runway and burst into flames, just five minutes after taking off.

Mr North completed an apprenticeship at RAF Halton in the 1950s after leaving school aged 15, going on to specialise in engineering and receiving an OBE. He spent much of his life living in Aylesbury, where his son, John, still lives today.