DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — DeKalb Fire Rescue has confirmed to Channel 2 Action News that there was a fatal plane crash at The DeKalb-Peachtree Airport Saturday afternoon.
The fatal crash took place at the Good Neighbor Day Stunt Show.
Witnesses say a biplane was engaged in a maneuver and was unable to pull out of a dive.
Police say the pilot did not survive the crash.
Friends have identified the pilot as South Carolina native Greg Connell of Greg Connell Airshows.
Gary Ward was the man flying the other plane in the maneuver that killed Connell.
"Greg flew underneath me and I had no idea Greg crashed like a second later. So I pulled off and the plan we had," Ward said, "I came back in the show for the next maneuver. We did individual maneuvers at that point, and I went ahead and did my next maneuver, not knowing that Greg had crashed.
Both the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board have been called to investigate the cause of this crash.
"We're looking at the man, the machine and the environment. Obviously the weather was good, some wind and we'll take that into consideration," Ralph Hicks with the NTSB said.
Airport officials say this is the first crash they've had at PDK during the 30 years the airport has been hosting air shows.
Flag at PDK are at half staff in honor of Connell.
What’s left of the stunt plane is towed away after today’s fatal crash @kpdkairport. pic.twitter.com/7zWcZH7bfD— Matt Johnson (@MattWSB) May 15, 2016
Channel 2 Action News spoke with Starr Jones of Atlanta who was at the air show with her daughter.
"It happened right in front of where I was standing. It was awful," Jones said. "The announcer said, 'A plane has crashed. Please cover your children's eyes and turn away.'"
Jones said she turned her daughter away from the scene of the crash and told her, "Let's say a prayer for that person."
Moments later Jones said the announcer told the crowd the show was shutting down.
Interim DeKalb County CEO Lee May issued the following statement:
"A tragedy occurred as professional pilots entertained and educated thousands today. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the pilot who lost his life."
Monitor WSBTV.com and tune into Channel 2 Action News for updates on this story
DeKalb Police confirm the pilot died in the PDK air show crash. They say he was from Augusta but have not ID'd him. pic.twitter.com/4wAX06HeTK— Richard Elliot (@RElliotWSB) May 14, 2016
DeKalb Fire Rescue put water on the plane wreckage to douse the fire. Photographer Scott Robertson took this photo. pic.twitter.com/LjAsNGXfC8— Richard Elliot (@RElliotWSB) May 14, 2016
Witness took a picture before takeoff of the plane that crashed @kpdkairport. pic.twitter.com/OooNdSLvSV— Matt Johnson (@MattWSB) May 14, 2016
***[WARNING: THE VIDEOS BELOW CONTAIN CONTENT SOME MAY FIND DISTURBING]***
DeKalb Police say no spectators were hurt in the air show crash at PDK. PDK says this is the first crash at an air show here in 30yrs.— Richard Elliot (@RElliotWSB) May 14, 2016
.@KatieWallsWSB says peak wind gust at PDK recorded at 27mph. @RElliotWSB— Wendy Corona (@WendyCoronaWSB) May 14, 2016
Air show volunteers didn't wait for permission. They went ahead and lowered the flags to half-staff at PDK. pic.twitter.com/K78z4SuzMC— Richard Elliot (@RElliotWSB) May 14, 2016
5pm #BREAKINGNEWS Stunt plane crash ends @PDKAirport Airshow. Details @wsbradio @wsbtv pic.twitter.com/qQU57I3GCQ— Mark McKay (@mckayWSB) May 14, 2016
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