The Pentagon on Jan. 29 identified the two airmen killed in the Jan. 27 crash of an E-11A Battlefield Airborne Communications Node aircraft in eastern Afghanistan.
The crash killed Lt. Col. Paul K. Voss, 46, of Yigo, Guam, and Capt. Ryan S. Phaneuf, 30, of Hudson, N.H.
Voss, whose callsign is “Tabs,” was the operations division branch chief at Headquarters Air Combat Command at JB Langley-Eustis, Va., according to a recent Air Force release.
Phaneuf was assigned to the 37th Bomb Squadron at Ellsworth AFB, S.D.
“It’s really hard to describe how sad we are at the loss of two great Airmen. Lt. Col. Paul Voss was our brother and teammate,” ACC boss Gen Mike Holmes said. “The men and women of our Air Force knowingly put themselves in harm’s way, and I’m thankful for great Americans like them. Our thoughts and prayers are with their family members and our fellow Airmen during this difficult time.”
The Air Force’s E-11 program, which includes just four aircraft and one operating base at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, does not have permanent pilots. Instead aircrew from other airframes train on simulators and fly their first sorties on the E-11 in theater. All E-11 crews are assigned to the 430th Expeditionary Electronic Combat Squadron.
The pilots were killed when the E-11 crashed in Ghazni Province and officials have said there is no indications the incident was caused by enemy fire. US forces recovered their remains from the crash site on Jan. 28, and destroyed the aircraft.