Snowbirds team member killed in Kamloops, B.C. crash identified
VICTORIA -- One member of the Canadian Forces Snowbirds has died and another has sustained serious injuries after their plane crashed in Kamloops, B.C., while on a cross-country tour.
CTV News has confirmed that Capt. Jennifer Casey has been identified as the Snowbirds team member killed in the crash.
According to the Snowbirds website, Casey is originally from Halifax, N.S. and joined the Canadian Forces in 2014 following a career in journalism. She joined the Snowbirds in 2018.
The Royal Canadian Air Force confirmed the fatality in a tweet Sunday afternoon.
In a subsequent tweet, the RCAF said the surviving member's injuries, while serious, were not life threatening.
That member is Capt. Richard MacDougall, who was piloting the aircraft, according to a release from the Department of National Defence. MacDougall is one of the team's coordinators, the department said.
Kamloops RCMP confirmed Sunday afternoon that they received a report that a Snowbird plane had crashed into a residence on Glenview Avenue, at about 11:42 a.m. local time.
BC Emergency Health Services said multiple paramedics responded to the scene and one person was transported to hospital. EHS could not provide any information about that patient's condition.
The RCMP is asking for the public to avoid the area of Glenview, Crestline Street, Schreiner Street and Tranquille Road.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took to social media on Sunday afternoon and said his thoughts are with the brave members of the Royal Canadian Air Force.
“I would also like to thank the emergency personnel in Kamloops who responded to quickly so this tragic incident,” he said.
In a statement, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer said he is saddened to hear of the crash.
“On behalf of the entire Conservative caucus, I would like to express our sincere condolences to the family and friends of the Canadian Forces Snowbirds team member who died in today’s tragic crash,” Scheer wrote in the statement. We wish the injured member a speedy recovery and would like to thank emergency personnel in Kamloops.”
“The Snowbirds have been traveling across the country for the past few weeks lifting Canadians’ spirits as part of Operation Inspiration. This is a tragic end to a tour that has brought much needed joy to so many.”
Federal Minister of Defence Harjit Sajjan said on Twitter that he was "deeply saddened" by the news of the crash, and offered his thanks to local first responders.
Kamloops Airport confirmed it was also responding to the crash in a tweet.