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Lindsay and four pilots, among them two experienced aviators from US Airways — is taking off three weeks before the June 6 anniversary, with the plane scheduled to participate in a commemorative jump by an American parachute team over original D-Day drop zones. It will be slow going: The Whiskey 7 will travel at about miles per hour, roughly a quarter of the cruising speed of the average contemporary commercial flight.
And while the plane will spend most of its time below the 10,foot level, at which oxygen is necessary, the air temperature inside the fuselage will probably linger around zero. For higher altitudes the crew will carry supplemental tanks of oxygen. Lindsay, who said he planned to pack a thermal sleeping bag, heavily layer his clothes, and celebrate when the plane reached Europe. Built in , the Whiskey 7 in Geneseo took off from Cottesmore, England, early on the morning of June 6, A young paratrooper named Leslie Palmer Cruise Jr. Now 89, Mr. Cruise remembers cacophonous noise, flak exploding, pitch-dark skies and a mad scramble to jump.
Cruise said in a telephone interview from his home in Horsham, Pa. Mitchell died in September, but the plans continued. It does have some more modern equipment, including donated GPS and landing systems, as well as an electronic locator beacon in case the plane needs to make a water landing. A portable toilet will be available, though privacy may be at a minimum. Like paratroopers of yore, passengers on the Normandy trip will sit on seats attached to each side of the fuselage, facing one another.
The jump door, however, will not be open or, the crewmen hope, used during the crossing. News of the trip spread quickly among veterans in the area, many of whom use the warplane museum and the local Veterans of Foreign Wars chapter to recapture the comradeship they felt during the war. When they were at war, most of the men were lonely and scared. Bob Yull, 88, another local veteran and Mr.
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Johnston recalled. Cruise, however, is returning to Normandy for the anniversary, albeit through an airline, not on the Whiskey 7. The father of the first named British victim of the Ethiopian Airlines flight which crashed minutes after take-off has paid tribute to his daughter who was so "warm" that "nobody had a bad word to say about her". Joanna Toole was one of seven Britons among the people killed when the plane crashed six minutes after taking off for Nairobi, Kenya, from Addis Ababa at 8.
Ms Toole, who worked for the fisheries department of the United Nations was "as as warm and as good with people as she was with animals", her father said as he paid tribute to her. The year-old was so "well-balanced" and "had such a warm touch, you'd not find anybody say a bad word against her", Adrian Toole said.
He recounted how his daughter had been a "passionate animal campaigner" throughout her life, advocating for the rights of badgers at the age of eight in her hometown of Exmouth. Mr Toole added that he was "proud" that his daughter had been able to turn her love of animals into a job, and had recently had a project on trying to stop marine animals becoming entangled in fishing nets accepted as a UN official programme - something that would now become her legacy, he said.
Mr Toole continued that his daughter had only just settled down in Rome after she and her partner had managed to get jobs at the UN after much hard work. Ms Toole was also praised as a "wonderful human being" by the director of the department she worked in. Manuel Barange, the director of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the UN fisheries and aquaculture department tweeted that he was "profoundly sad and lost for words" over the death of his colleague.
At least 19 employees of UN-affiliated organisations were killed in the crash, including United Nations aid worker and engineer Michael Mick Ryan. Mr Barange continued that his colleague was "a wonderful human being, who loved her work with a passion.
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A second British victim was named as Joseph Waithaka - a year-old Kenyan and British dual national. Speaking to the Hull Daily Mail, Mr Waithaka's son, Ben Kuria said his father had worked for the Probation Service, adding: "He helped so many people in Hull who had found themselves on the wrong side of the law.
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The cause of the crash is yet to be determined but the airline confirmed the pilot had notified officials of difficulties and the plane had been cleared to turn around during its six minutes in the air. An eyewitness described how there was an intense fire when the plane crashed and "everything is burnt down". There were no survivors among the passengers and nine crew members - from at least 35 nationalities - on board. Hospitality company Tamarind Group - a Kenyan business which owns and runs restaurants, hotels and a casino - said its chief executive Jonathan Seex was killed in the crash.
The UK's ambassador to Ethiopia confirmed the deaths of seven Britons in a video post in which he also said Foreign Office staff are working to find out more details on what happened.
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Mr McPhail expressed his condolences to the victims and urged people worried about loved ones to follow the Foreign Office's social media channels for more information and details on who to contact if families and friends are worried about loved ones. The British embassy in Ethiopia listed the emergency contact numbers for anyone worried about British nationals.
Earlier on Sunday morning, the plane had flown from Johannesburg to Addis Ababa, and previously underwent "rigorous" testing on February 4, according to the airline.