Father of deceased F-16 fighter pilot bows to rescue workers in Taipei

Father of F-16 fighter pilot who perished in crash in mountains of New Taipei bows to express gratitude to rescue workers

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Wu bowing to rescue workers.

Wu bowing to rescue workers. (By Central News Agency)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- The father of the F-16 fighter pilot who lost his life when his jet crashed in the mountains of New Taipei on Monday (June 4) this morning (June 6) bowed to show his rescue workers, reported CNA.

At 8 a.m. this morning, Major Wu Yen-ting's (吳彥霆) father, also surnamed Wu, was accompanied by military personnel to the scene of the deadly crash on Wufen Mountain (五分山) in New Taipei's Rueifang District in order to pray for his son's soul. When Wu neared a weather radar station on the mountain where many rescue workers had gathered, Wu spontaneously bowed deeply toward them to offer gratitude for the dangerous search and rescue efforts they undertook to find his son and to thank them for their hard work.

Wu's father also expressed the hope that the rescue crews continue with their search and recovery plan and do not extend it longer than normal. In return, the search and rescue workers said that they hope Wu's family members will be able to cope with their sorrow and said that they were just doing their job to help as much as possible and to allow the major to rest in peace.

In addition, the aircraft's black box was located yesterday but an Air Force official told CNA that they had yet to locate the crucial memory board with contains the flight data. The New Taipei City Fire Department still has the Sixth Brigade and a special search team scouring the area, which includes includes 45 firefighters and 15 volunteer firefighters.


F-16 fighter jet. (CNA image)

The F-16 Fighting Falcon took off at 1:19 p.m. on Monday, June 4 from Hualien Air Force Base to participate in the first day of live-fire exercises for the annual five-day Han Kuang military exercises. Pieces of the wreckage of the warplane were first spotted by a hiker on Wufen Mountain (五分山) in New Taipei's Rueifang District, and the finding was confirmed at approximately 2:39 in the afternoon, reports CNA.

After nearly five hours of searching, officials found the tattered and bloodied remains of Major Wu Yen-ting's (吳彥霆) flight suit at the scene of the crash at 7:00 p.m. When fire department rescuers arrived on the scene at 7:57 p.m., they found pieces of the man's flesh scattered around a large area and remnants of his undergarments hanging from a tree, and confirmed that the remains were that of Wu, according to CNA.


Wreckage from aircraft. (CNA image)

Based on an initial investigation, the Air Force said that the crash was caused by a "combination" of factors including environment, weather, and human error, reported China Times. In the wake of the crash, the Air Force has grounded all F-16s immediately.

The Air Force is putting together a team to investigate the cause of the crash in further detail, including inspecting the aircraft's flight control system, engine, ejection seat, avionics, navigation and other systems.


Major Wu Yen-ting. (Image from Wu Yen-ting's Facebook page)