Andrew Phillips was killed when his RV-7A crashed on Saturday, 23 Jan. No idea yet on what caused the accident. He was flying back from Lindsay to Smiths Falls, in the company of two other aircraft. They were talking back and forth on the radio, and suddenly he was no longer answering, nor could he be seen. The other two aircraft searched along the ground track, but didn't see any signs of a crash. They then headed for Smiths Falls, hoping to find that he had experienced a radio failure, and that he had already landed. But, he wasn't there, so they went online to check his Spot track. The Spot hits stopped about where he was last seen, so they phoned the Trenton Joint Rescue Coordination Centre to report him missing, then they gassed up and went back to search some more. A Search and Rescue aircraft from Trenton found the wreckage at about 10:30 PM. Andrew's body was found in the remains of the aircraft. Read news stories and his obituary.

I had spoken with Andrew a few times, but certainly didn't know him very. He was a very nice guy, and was a tremendously enthusiastic member of the local RV community. My heart goes out to his wife and two young sons.

Andrew's memorial service was held at the Smith's Falls airport Saturday, in the Classic Wings hangar. The turnout was huge, with all the chairs filled, and a large crowd standing at the back.

I've lost a huge number of friends and acquaintances in aircraft accidents over the years. I was counting them for awhile, but stopped counting when I hit twelve back in the early 90s. Flying certainly has its risks - you can greatly minimize the risk by using best practices for everything, but you can never completely eliminate the risk. Everything we do in life has risk. You can die in a car accident (as we almost did last year), you can be killed walking along the street (as happened to a neighbour a few years ago), and you can expire in your sleep. In the end, you need to live your life. Be smart and careful about what you do, and how you do it, but don't stop living.