VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — A decade has passed since an F-18 jet crashed into an apartment building in Virginia Beach.
It happened on April 6, 2012, when a Navy fighter jet crashed into an apartment complex on Birdneck Road after suffering double engine failure shortly after taking off from NAS Oceana.
The Mayfair Mews apartments are gone, but the memories of what happened are not forgotten.
The jet was part of Strike Fighter Squadron 106 and was conducting a training mission when it crashed. The event has been referred to by many as the “Good Friday Miracle.”
There were no fatalities reported from crew members or residents on the ground, however, the crash did reduce the majority of the building into rubble. Residents in the area were all accounted for following the crash.
According to the Associated Press, the jet was able to dump fuel before the crash which covered nearby buildings and cars.
“All I seen was the pilots had to jump out and eject the plane fall and go boom.” Doggstuff business owner Cheryl McKee knew something was wrong when she heard the jet getting closer.
“When I heard the plane in the air not running correctly, I wanted to get out of there.”
Outside her business, she spotted the jet coming over the nearby two-story apartment building at an angle.
“From there it turned and started to veer in that direction. It went over the apartments and then it went down.”
For weeks investigators sifted through the debris. The tragedy happened just two days before Easter.
In the end, 30 residents were displaced and the two pilots suffered minor injuries.