UPDATE: Man Dies after Falling from Plane at Selfridge Air Show
A wing walker fell 200 feet during the Selfridge Air Show on Sunday in Harrison Township, Michigan.
A man has died after falling from a stunt plane Sunday at the Selfridge Air Show in Harrison Township, according to a hospital spokeswoman.
Todd Green fell 200 feet to the ground when he tried to switch from his airplane to a helicopter at approximately 1:30 p.m. Sunday at the show at Selfridge Air National Guard Base in Harrison Township, according to a press release from the 127th Wing Public Affairs.
Green, who was a wing walker, was flying on John Mohr’s Stearman aircraft.
Green was taken to Mount Clemens Regional Medical Center. Hospital spokeswoman Diane Kish said he has died.
The stuntman was 48 and lived in Ann Arbor. He was pronounced dead at 2:02 p.m., according to a Macomb County Sheriff's Office report.
Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel and Sheriff Anthony Wickersham attended the event at the time of the accident but did not witness Green falling.
"You can tell just by the reaction of the crowd something happened," Hackel, a former sheriff, said Sunday. "We immediately realized that Selfridge people were very prepared to respond."
After the incident, runways were shut down and all flights stopped. Some attendees left, others gathered in prayer and many stayed to see the show continue about an hour later.
"I think it gave some level of comfort for people hoping he was going to make it," he said of the flights that took place afterward.
Later in the evening, word came that Green did not survive his injuries.
Green, a Michigan native, is son of legendary stuntman "Eddie The Grip Green." He got into the profession more than 25 years ago, following in his father's footsteps, according to stuntworksairshows.com.
When not performing daring stunts, such as car-to-plane transfers and wing walking, Green enjoyed spending time with his fiancee, Dawn, at his Northern Michigan cottage. He also liked playing Texas Hold 'em with his son Tyler and Dawn's son Derrick as well as flying his RC helicopter, car racing and snowmobiling, the site stated.
Immediately following the accident, many people commented on the Selfridge Air Show and Open House Facebook page.
- Jessica Hadden "That is so sad!!! Yesterday was our 1st time attending the Air show event and we were completely AWESTRUCK by this man! Prayers go out to his family!!"
- Beth Arcese Mazzie Bryer "Very sad. I was there with my family. My heart sunk and I was sick to my stomach. I was following the plane with my camera and watched all the passes up close with my big lens and have a very unfortunate picture that I will be deleting. It was horrifying and sad. My daughter nearly cried and keeps talking about it. I kinda didn't want to stay but felt it was kinda disrespectful to leave. If that makes sense. My guess is that people like Todd are risk takers and would have wanted the show to go on. I am saddened, but will attend the next airshow. My dad who passed away a few years ago was a Vietnam Vet and was very patriotic so being at the base makes me feel closer to him and I am very proud of our service men and women. I am keeping hope and faith for a good outcome for Todd and his family. I will stay positive until I hear something official."
- Bill Mattocks "We were there and witnessed it also. We left as others have said, being unable to enjoy ourselves after seeing such a heartbreaking thing right in front of our eyes. Our prayers also for him and his family. So sad."
The Selfridge Air Show attracts thousands of fans from across Michigan, as aviation and military enthusiasts watch stunts and various aircraft fly overhead. The event, which is popular among families, also includes an open house that allows attendees to go inside aircraft on display.
Green's death Sunday was not the first fatality during the Selfridge Air Show. In 1994, a plane crash during the show killed pilot Ray Mabrey.