A vintage WWII plane, a P-47 Thunderbolt, crashed into the Hudson River as the sun set yesterday evening. Tragically, the pilot did not survive.
The single-seater aircraft from the American Airpower Museum in Farmingdale, N.Y, together with another plane from WWII the P-40, were being photographed in flight, to promote an airshow celebrating the 75th anniversary of the P-47 Thunderbolt scheduled to take place this weekend at Jones Beach.
My friend John Michael Arcella, who happened to be biking along the waterfront, captured this video of the very moment (0:11) the plane hit the water.
Rescue teams from USCG New York, NYPD, FDNY, NJ State Police, NYPD Aviation, and other local agencies were on scene within moments but they were unable to save the trapped pilot from the submerged aircraft. NYPD dive teams recovered the pilot around 10:40 pm. The Army Corps of Engineers salvage ops will begin today.
Our sincere condolences go out to the family and friends of the pilot. RIP.
Special shout-out to Capt. Kent Bates of Kirby’s tug Amberjack and barge Pacific who was anchored near the crash site and shared real-time updates with me as the tragic event unfolded; and to my buddy John Michael Arcella, for being in the right place, at the right time.
posted by Mai Armstrong for the Working Harbor Committee