Navy identifies flying instructor and student killed in military plane crash

"Their spirit, friendship, and devotion" will not be forgotten, the Navy said.

October 25, 2020, 3:48 PM

A Navy flying instructor and Coast Guard student were identified by officials on Sunday as the service members killed in a military plane crash in Alabama on Friday.

Navy instructor pilot Lt. Rhiannon Ross, 30, was on a routine training flight out of Naval Air Station Whiting Field, Florida, with her student, Coast Guard Ensign Morgan Garrett, 24, when their Navy T-6B Texan II trainer aircraft crashed in a residential area of Foley, Alabama, according to Navy officials.

Ross was from Wixom, Michigan. Garrett was from Weddington, North Carolina.

PHOTO: U.S. Coast Guard Ensign Morgan Garrett, a student naval aviator.
U.S. Coast Guard Ensign Morgan Garrett, a student naval aviator. Garrett and Navy Lt. Rhiannon Ross, an instructor pilot, died Oct. 23, 2020 when their T-6B Texan II trainer aircraft crashed in Foley, Alabama.
LT Michelle Tucker/US Navy

"Their spirit, friendship, and devotion to their country will not be forgotten," the Navy statement said.

While Navy and local police officials confirmed there were no civilians injured, the accident caused serious damage to a house and several vehicles, Foley Fire Chief Joey Darby told Birmingham ABC affiliate WBMA.

"This is something we don't see every day," he said.

PHOTO: U.S. Navy Lt. Rhiannon Ross, an instructor pilot, stands in front of a T-6B Texan II primary flight trainer aircraft at Naval Air Station Whiting Field in Milton, Fla.
U.S. Navy Lt. Rhiannon Ross, an instructor pilot, stands in front of a T-6B Texan II primary flight trainer aircraft at Naval Air Station Whiting Field in Milton, Fla. Ross and U.S. Coast Guard Ensign Morgan Garrett, a student naval aviator, died Oct. 23, 2020, when their aircraft crashed in Foley, Alabama.
LT Michelle Tucker/US Navy

The Navy T-6B Texan II aircraft can be controlled from either of its two seats, both of which are capable of ejecting in emergencies. Officials have not confirmed the cause of Friday's crash, but say the incident is being investigated.

"Local and Navy emergency personnel responded to the scene to secure the area and ensure the safety of the local community," the Navy said in a statement Sunday, adding that it is working with local authorities in the investigation.

PHOTO: T-6B Texan II training aircraft assigned to Training Wing (TRAWING) 5 from Pensacola, Fla., are staged on the tarmac at Millington Regional Jetport.
T-6B Texan II training aircraft assigned to Training Wing (TRAWING) 5 from Pensacola, Fla., are staged on the tarmac at Millington Regional Jetport.
Mc3 Ty C. Connors/U.S. Navy

Prior to Friday's crash, it had been more than a year since the Navy's last deadly aircraft incident, Naval Air Forces spokesman Cmdr. Zach Harrell told ABC News.

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