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Red Arrows widow Emma Egging is VIP guest at Bournemouth Air Festival
12:08pm Friday 30th August 2013 in News
IT was the aerial spectacular that attracted a massive crowd of tens of thousands – and among them was a very special guest.
Watching the famous Red Arrows roar across the skies at the Bournemouth Air Festival yesterday was Dr Emma Egging – two years after the death of her husband at the show.
Flight Lieutenant Jon Egging, a former Southampton University student, was killed after his Hawk T1 aircraft crashed in a field near Throop Mill following a display at the festival in 2011.
In a poignant tribute yesterday the crew performed a stunning routine – at one point leaving a giant heart-shaped vapour trail in the skies in support of the Egging family over the top of the Jon Egging memorial.
It was the perfect end to the daytime flying on the first day of the sixth air festival, which is expected to attract more than a million people over the next four days.
The afternoon began with the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, whose Lancaster bomber, Spitfire and Hurricane swooped against blue skies in scenes reminiscent of the summer of 1940.
The Lancaster’s solo display paid tribute to the famous Dambusters raids of 70 years ago.
The RV8tors then gave the thousands on the beach and clifftop their first dose of daring aerobatics, before more history screamed into view in the shape of the Jet Provost.
The Tucano showed one of the stages all fast jet pilots complete during their training, before a new team arrived in the shape of France’s Patrouille Reva, a sure indication of the event’s ability to attract teams from overseas.
This year’s first helicopter then took to the skies – a solo Black Cat Lynx display – before the Tigers parachute team dropped onto the beach.
Multiple aerobatic champion Gerald Cooper stunned onlookers with his gravity-defying flying, while the Merlin helicopter got up close to the crowds ahead of a chance to see a Spitfire solo.
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