Wing Walker Plunges to His Death

Stuntman Todd Green slips as he reaches for helicopter in Michigan air show
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 22, 2011 1:19 AM CDT
Updated Aug 22, 2011 2:57 AM CDT
Wing Walker Plunges to His Death
Crowd watches as wing walker Todd Green attempts to grab onto a helicopter before falling 200 feet to his death during a Michigan air show yesterday.   (AP Photo/Jeremy Mitchell)

A horrified crowd watched yesterday as a Michigan wing walker plunged to his death during an air show stunt. Todd Green fell some 200 feet at the Air National Guard Base in Selfridge near Detroit as he attempted to grab onto a helicopter hovering over the plane. "I thought it was part of the stunt," one witness told the Detroit News. "It felt surreal. It wasn't until the ambulance came that it set in." It was "very somber," said another witness. "It's a pretty sad situation." Green was the son of legendary aerial stuntman Eddie "The Grip" Green, and had performed the helicopter transfer stunt several times.

"Todd was extremely good at what he did and logged many hours doing stunts," said a fellow stunt man. "He was one of the best in the business. He was very proud of his legacy and his family's legacy." Authorities are investigating the accident. It was the third air show death over the weekend. A pilot in England and one in Kansas both died when their planes crashed. "Air show accidents aren't as common as you think," said Green's stuntman friend. "We're professionally trained and we know what we're doing." (Read more air show stories.)

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