LINCOLN — A tight-knit Lincoln community is where Lt. Col. Ira Eadie, better known as Steve, called home. Wednesday, friends and family gathered there to mourn the loss of the U.S. Air Force pilot.
FOX40 spoke to Eadie’s family. They have no comment at this time and ask that their privacy be respected. It’s a difficult and unexpected death.
“It’s not often that you have an aircraft, especially a military aircraft, go down,” said Undersheriff Jeff Pierce with the Sutter County Sheriff’s Department.
Investigators said a training flight crashed in the Sutter Buttes Tuesday morning. Eadie and another pilot on board the U-2 Dragon Lady ejected and deployed parachutes.
The other pilot hasn’t been identified, but is recovering and in good condition according to Beale Air Force Base.
Eadie died after ejecting, leaving behind his wife, six children and granddaughter.
“This is a somber time,” said Danielle Barnes, 9th Mission Support Group Commander.
His family says Eadie, also known as “Shooter,” is a 20-year veteran of the Air Force. He’s been stationed in California for six years.
The military with help from the Sutter County Sheriff’s Office is investigating why the plane went down. We’re told all U-2 planes are currently grounded at Beale Air Force base. It’s the first time a U-2 has crashed in 20 years.
The family has set up an online account to raise money for funeral costs and other expenses.