Residents across northern Virginia, Washington D.C., and Maryland heard the sound of large explosion on Sunday afternoon. The boom was caused by a dangerous situation where the U.S. military intercepted an unresponsive aircraft heading towards the nations capitol. F-16 fighter jets out of Joint Base Andrews were forced to scramble and this resulted in a sonic boom which echoed across the region. The unresponsive aircraft was found to be a civilian Cessna who’s pilot was unconscious. The plane would be escorted by the fighter jets until it crashed into the mountains of the Virgina countryside killing everyone on board.

According to Fox News:

In order to catch up with the plane, the jets were authorized to fly at supersonic speeds, and the sonic boom came from the two F-16 jets out of Andrews. The civilian plane was intercepted at 3:20 p.m. and fighter pilots reported the pilot of the Cessna was unresponsive.

NORAD also said they continued to try and establish contact with the Cessna pilot up until the plane crashed near the George Washington National Forest in Virginia. NORAD also said people on the ground may have seen flares used while trying to intercept the plane. The flares, NORAD said, burn out quickly and completely, so there was no danger to the people on the ground.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration, a Cessna Citation that took off from Elizabethton, Tennessee, bound for Islip, New York, crashed in the sparsely populated town of Montebello, Virginia, around 3 p.m. There were four people on board.

Virginia State Police said search efforts began immediately by air and on foot with the Augusta County Sheriff’s Office and Augusta County Fire-Rescue after a notification at 3:50 p.m. reported a possible plane crash in the Staunton/Blue Ridge Parkway region.

Search efforts were suspended shortly before 8 p.m. Sunday after first responders reached the crash site by foot and found no survivors, Virginia State Police confirmed to Fox News Digital.

Latest reports reveal the plane belonged to a leading Trump donor, John Rumpel, who’s entire family was on board. He told the Washington Post that his daughter and two granddaughters were on board and that the crash was under investigation.

 

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