JESUP, Ga. — There was fog on the ground at a rural Georgia airport when a small plane attempting to land crashed and killed its pilot, a chiropractor who had served in the U.S. military as a Navy SEAL, according to federal investigators.
But the preliminary report by the National Transportation Safety Board doesn’t say what role the foggy conditions may have played in the April 6 crash that killed Howard Wasdin at the small airport in Wayne County, southwest of Savannah. The cause of the crash remains under investigation.
The report says that airport workers told investigators there was fog on the runway when they arrived at the site about five minutes after the single-engine airplane crashed nearby. The NTSB report says the fog had limited visibility at the airport to about one-fourth of a mile (0.4 kilometers).
Wasdin was flying himself home from Fernandina Beach, Florida, on an overcast morning and was trying to land when his Cirrus SR22 plane struck the ground about 1,200 foot (366 meters) from the runway, the NTSB said. Wasdin was killed by the impact.
Wasdin was a chiropractor in the county seat of Jesup. Before that, he served in the Navy as a member of the elite SEAL Team 6. In 2011, Wasdin co-authored a chronicle of his military service titled “SEAL Team Six: Memoirs of an Elite Navy SEAL Sniper.”
According to his website, Wasdin served 12 years in the Navy, including nine years as a SEAL. He was medically retired after being wounded in the 1993 battle in Mogadishu, Somalia, later featured in the book and film “Black Hawk Down.”