Sad news out of California this afternoon, the Northrop N-9M has crashed killing one. The N-9M crashed in a prison yard killing the pilot. The cause of the accident is still Unknown. This was the only flying N9M.
The Northrop N-9M was an approximately one-third scale, 60-ft span all-wing aircraft used for the development of the full size, 172-ft wingspan [Northrop XB-35 and YB-35 flying wing long-range, heavy bomber. First flown in 1942, the N-9M (M for Model) was the third in a lineage of all-wing Northrop aircraft designs that began in 1929.
This is very unfortunate, but out of respect and reasonability with the IFC as a whole, please refrain from posting about small plane crashes. Again, this is very saddening and I hope the cause is found out and I give my condolences to the families of those lost.
I believe this to be a topic that needs to be on here. This isn’t some old Cessna crashing in a field with no fatalities. This is a historical aviation treasure, and it is quite important. RIP to the pilot, and to the only flying N-9M.
I am David Vopat’s family. He was my beautiful cousin, an expert pilot. He worked often as a pilot of vintage and war planes - had huge respect for these treasures. He flew regularly as an American Airlines pilot, then in any of his off time, flew these beauties. He grew up in airports and always around and near planes. He’s flown this one many times for the airshows. He was a really wonderful man – Just Friday we spoke for over an hour about his love for these planes. If you notice, he ended up missing over 3200 people and buildings without hurting anyone – that was intended, that’s the kind of guy he was. His name is David – RIP to my sweet cousin!
I was very fortunate to be able to work & fly warbirds with David. As you indubitably know he was very special to many. His infectious spirit & professionalism were quite evident even to an old hand such as me. We became fast friends & roommates at The Collings Foundation. I deeply regret not making enough time to swing by for a meal & some laughs this past March while I was in LA.
Condolences from my family to you all,