Shaw F-16 pilot dies in Afghanistan - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Shaw F-16 pilot dies in Afghanistan

Capt. James Michael Steel (Source: Shaw Air Force Base) Capt. James Michael Steel (Source: Shaw Air Force Base)

SUMTER, SC (WIS) - An American F-16 fighter jet from Shaw Air Force Base crashed in eastern Afghanistan Wednesday, killing the U.S. pilot.

Capt. James Michael Steel, 29, of Tampa, Fla., died in the crash near Bagram Airfield, according to the Department of Defense. He was assigned to the 77th Fighter Squadron.

According to Stars and Stripes, the plane was on final approach to land after an air support mission when it crashed about 10 miles from the runway.

Steel graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 2006, completed pilot training and arrived at Shaw in June 2010. He was the chief of mobility for the 77th Fighter Squadron.

"Our condolences and prayers are with the family, friends and squadron members of Capt. Steel," said Col. Clay Hall, 20th Fighter Wing commander. "This is a difficult time for Shaw AFB, but we are focused on taking care of the Steel family, our Airmen and continuing to execute the mission."

Steel comes from a family with deep roots in the Air Force. His father, Maj. Gen. Robert Steel, was commandant of the National War College at Fort McNair in Washington, DC until January of 2011. He spoke at his son's graduation from the 63rd Fighter Squadron in 2009.

Steel's mother and five other siblings all have Air Force ties as well.

NATO said in a statement Thursday that the cause of the crash is still being investigated, but initial reporting indicates that there was "no insurgent activity in the area" when the plane went down.     

Copyright 2013 WIS. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

  • Local NewsLocalMore>>

  • New development could add about 1,600 new homes to Socastee

    New development could add about 1,600 new homes to Socastee

    Friday, February 23 2018 11:31 PM EST2018-02-24 04:31:31 GMT
    The area in question is on Folly Road right off Socastee Blvd. (Source: WMBF News)The area in question is on Folly Road right off Socastee Blvd. (Source: WMBF News)
    The area in question is on Folly Road right off Socastee Blvd. Source: Sage Speaks (WMBF)The area in question is on Folly Road right off Socastee Blvd. Source: Sage Speaks (WMBF)

    A new development originally scrapped last year is back on the table in Socastee, and it could add almost 1,600 new homes.

    More >>

    A new development originally scrapped last year is back on the table in Socastee, and it could add almost 1,600 new homes.

    More >>
  • Security upgrades coming to Johnsonville schools

    Security upgrades coming to Johnsonville schools

    Friday, February 23 2018 9:16 PM EST2018-02-24 02:16:58 GMT
    Johnsonville Elementary School (Source: WMBF News)Johnsonville Elementary School (Source: WMBF News)
    Johnsonville Elementary School (Source: WMBF News)Johnsonville Elementary School (Source: WMBF News)

    Florence School District 5 officials recently announced they will spend more than $300,000 in security upgrades at its schools.

    More >>

    Florence School District 5 officials recently announced they will spend more than $300,000 in security upgrades at its schools.

    More >>
  • Pawleys Island church being moved for repairs

    Pawleys Island church being moved for repairs

    Friday, February 23 2018 8:50 PM EST2018-02-24 01:50:47 GMT
    Crews get ready to move the church across the street. (Source: Pawleys Island Police on Twitter)Crews get ready to move the church across the street. (Source: Pawleys Island Police on Twitter)

    The Pawleys Island Chapel is being carefully moved across the street Friday so that repairs can be made on the building’s foundation. The church, which has been in the Pawleys Island community for about 50 years, is being lifted and moved across Myrtle Avenue between the North and South Causeways.

    More >>

    The Pawleys Island Chapel is being carefully moved across the street Friday so that repairs can be made on the building’s foundation. The church, which has been in the Pawleys Island community for about 50 years, is being lifted and moved across Myrtle Avenue between the North and South Causeways.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly