Cause of Minot Airman’s Death Identified

Misaligned equipment led to the death of SrA. Richard Gallelli on April 29 during a cruise missile loading drill at Minot AFB, N.D., Air Force accident investigators have determined. Gallelli, a member of Minot’s 17th Munitions Squadron, was on a team that day training to be recertified to mate Air Launched Cruise Missiles to the pylons that B-52 bombers carry them on. These airmen were following the proper procedures and the equipment involved was functioning properly, stated Air Force Materiel Command officials in Monday’s release discussing the investigators’ findings. However, the airmen were not aware that the equipment was misaligned in such a way that allowed the missile to roll off and fall on Gallelli, killing him. He was 22. AFMC has since implemented “a short-term engineering solution” and is developing a long-term one so that this type of mishap cannot happen again, states the release.