Injured F/A-18E pilot upgraded to good condition

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by 13News Now

WVEC.com

Posted on January 28, 2014 at 3:52 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 28 at 3:52 PM

UPDATE 1/28:  Naval Air Force Atlantic spokesman Mike Maus said Tuesday the pilot is listed in good condition. He was originally listed in critical condition by medical staff after being flown by Navy helicopters to a civilian hospital in Norfolk on January 15. 

UPDATE 1/27:  The pilot has been transferred to Naval Medical Center Portsmouth for further treatment.  He is listed in stable condition.

UPDATE 1/24: The pilot remains in critical condition at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital.

UPDATE 1/17:  RADM Mike Shoemaker, commander Naval Air Force Atlantic, says the super hornet's black box has been recovered.  The pilot is still in critical condition, but "we're optimistic."

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VIRGINIA BEACH -- The pilot of an F/A-18E was rescued safely after ejecting from his aircraft during a routine training mission off the Virginia Beach coast Wednesday.

According to Naval Air Force Atlantic Commander Mike Kafka, the life raft deployed after the pilot ejected.

The pilot was rescued by a civilian fishing vessel, Kafka said. The pilot was conscious and transported to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital by a Navy MH-60 Sea Hawk.  

Kafka tells 13News Now the pilot is in critical condition. 

The F/A-18E is a single seated aircraft assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron One Four Three (VFA-143) based at Naval Air Station Oceana.

The USCG says they were called around 2:30 p.m. to look for Navy aircraft debris about 45 miles from Virginia Beach. 

USCG Cutter Albacore and Elm are heading to the scene, officials said.

The crash comes one week after a Navy MH-53E Sea Dragon went down in the Atlantic.  The body of Lt. Sean Christopher Snyder was found in the wreckage. Two sailors died from their injuries.  Two other crewmembers were treated and released.

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