Pilot Nancy Lynn Dies in Culpeper Crash

By: Autria Godfrey
By: Autria Godfrey

October 16, 2006

For close to 20 years, Nancy Lynn wowed audiences with her aerobatic skills in a plane. Last Saturday, she planned to do so at Culpeper Air Fest for the first time . However, as Nancy took to the sky and attempted a classic "snap roll," the wingtip caught the ground, and the plane crashed, erupting in flames.

"If you can imagine gasoline burning that's what it is, it enveloped the whole front of the airplane and then spread towards the back," Culpeper County Administrator Frank Bossio said.

Nancy's 16-year-old son Peter witnessed the accident. His surprising first reaction? To calm the spectators.

"Got on the microphone and besieged the crowd to stay under control, everything's calm and the situation is being handled, showed great courage and wisdom well beyond his years," Bossio continued.

Nancy was taken to UVa Medical Center where she died Saturday night.

As news of Nancy's death traveled back to Queen Anne's county, friends at the Bay Bridge Airport took it hard.

"There's been a few plane crashes that people have died in since I've worked here, this one's hit me the hardest. It really has, it's very sad," Pat Ray, friend of Nancy Lynn's said.

As investigators work to pinpoint just what went wrong, friends are left remembering Nancy's impact when things went right.

"Can you imagine what a tremendous role model she is to everyone who wants to be a pilot, but even more specifically to young ladies who think 'I may want to be a pilot,'" Bussio said.

Both the National Transportation Safety Board and the FAA are conducting the investigation and officials at Culpeper Regional Airport are asking that anyone with either pictures or video of the crash make it available to help with the investigation.

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