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RAF spokesman Michael Mulford
"For us it's a profoundly poignant moment"
 real 28k

Friday, 30 March, 2001, 15:36 GMT 16:36 UK
Second body found at F15 crash site
F15s from Lakenheath
The two pilots went missing on Monday
Mountain rescue teams searching near the wreckage of two American jet fighters in the Cairngorms have found a second body.

Grampian Police said a formal identification is still to be carried out.

An inch-by-inch search had been going on since the F15C jets disappeared while on a training flight near the summit of Ben Macdui on Monday.

Wreckage was found in the Cairngorms
Rescue teams had already located the wreckage of both jets, and the body of the first pilot, Lieutenant Colonel Kenneth John Hyvonen.

The search for the second pilot, Captain Kirk Jones, had been called off on Thursday because of deteriorating weather conditions.

Police said the search will now be scaled down.

The remains of one plane and the body of Lt Col Hyvonen, were discovered on Tuesday and the wreckage of the second aircraft was discovered the following day.

Royal Air Force spokesman Michael Mulford said it had been identified following the discovery of a section of its tail.

Routine exercise

"It was lying some 400 yards or so from the wreckage of the first aircraft," he said.

"It is slightly higher up Ben Macdui and slightly to the north west.

"For us it's a profoundly poignant moment. Search and rescue is all about hoping that you will have a happy outcome.

"On this occasion, sadly we haven't but at least we've been able to restore two pilots to their families and that for us is some consolation."

It is strongly suspected that one aircraft followed the other into the mountain while flying in poor weather during a routine exercise.

Sea King
Rescue teams faced appalling conditions
The wreckage of the first jet was sighted roughly half a mile south-east of Ben Macdui in the Cairngorms - close to the area where the last radar contact was made with the pilots' two F15C fighters on Monday afternoon.

Rescuers found the plane after following the scent of aviation fuel - and shortly afterwards they also discovered the body of Lt Col Hyvonen.

Both men were qualified F15 pilots and had taken off from Lakenheath air base in Suffolk, England, at 1230BST on Monday.

USAF Lakenheath said Lt Col Hyvonen was a member of the 48th Operations Support Squadron and Capt Jones was a member of the 493rd Fighter Squadron.

She said Lt Col Hyvonen had been in the USAF since 1984 and based at Lakenheath since 1999.

Capt Jones had been in the air force since 1997 and based at Lakenheath since 1999.

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See also:

27 Mar 01 | Scotland
Body found in hunt for pilots
27 Mar 01 | Scotland
Weather hampers jets search
26 Mar 01 | Scotland
Search for missing US jets aborted
26 Mar 01 | Europe
US plane accident in Germany
26 Mar 01 | Scotland
America's frontline fighter
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