Plane that crashed in Afghanistan was recently in Fresno

May 1, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
Seven Americans were killed in a cargo plane crash near the Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan. That 747 cargo plane was recently here in Fresno.

Air Force officials say the Dubai-bound Boeing 747 crashed just after takeoff on Monday, and all of the people on board were employees. Investigators say cargo on board might have shifted and caused the plane to stall and fall from the sky.

That 747 cargo plane was recently here in Fresno. The plane was parked at Fresno Yosemite International Airport for two weeks, while awaiting assignment to Afghanistan. While the plane was here it's crew members became friends with students at a local aviation school.

The huge 747 was at Fresno Yosemite International Airport for two weeks, after delivering cargo to Los Angeles, it was parked at in Fresno awaiting its next assignments, which included the fatal flight to Afghanistan.

The big silver and blue plane aroused the curiosity of the David Miranda, a student at the San Joaquin Valley College Aviation Maintenance School, and he got acquainted with the mechanics.

David arranged for his classmates to go on board. "Enabled us to get on and see the plane, meet the head mechanics, Gary and Dan, and take an in depth tour of the entire plane."

"I was talking to Gary mostly, finding out how long he's been in the business how he got into it any advice he could give me as an up and coming mechanic so, he had three kids and was a family man," said Miranda.

Action News has not confirmed that the Gary he met was the Gary Stockdale of Michigan who was one of the 7 who died in the crash.

The dean of the aviation school, Jason Alves also became acquainted with the crew members. The horrific video of the crash really hit home. "Scary, because we sat in the cockpit. I was given a private tour of the cockpit, and I cant imagine what it would have been like to be in that cockpit when the plane went down knowing there was nothing I can do."

The cargo plane stayed in Fresno for two weeks before heading overseas because it was cheaper here than stay at LAX. The aviation crew students here say it's a visit they won't soon forget.


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