AVOCA, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Eyewitness News has continuing coverage on the plane tragedy where it all started, at the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport.
Eyewitness News has learned that the man who went down with his plane had a passion for flying and air power history.
“It’s a mission to educate people, both on the history of our country and what was done,” Travnicek said.
50-year-old Andy Travnicek loved to fly World War II-era planes. The man known as “Trav” was a graduate of the United States Air Force academy and a former C-5 Galaxy pilot.
The commercial airline pilot also served in the military. In a statement from the Geico Skytypers, they describe how he completed many deployments during his time in the military, in places like Qatar, Spain and Afghanistan.
Travnicek’s wife Sandy, is also a veteran military pilot. They lived together in New Hampshire.
“It’s nice to do something that Sandy enjoys also, and we can spend more time together when we’re not worrying about chores around the house,” Travnicek said.
The Geico Skytypers also say he enjoyed flying warbirds to honor those in all branches of the U.S. military. He also encouraged many young people to pursue their interests and careers in aviation.
Many people took to Facebook to extend their condolences and share memories about Travnicek.
Commemorative Airforce wrote “Our hearts are with the family and friends of CAF Colonel Andy Travnicek,” with photos of him beside a small plane.
Air Force Thunderbirds also made a post and part of it read “The collective hearts of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds are with Trav, his family, his friends and his demonstration team during this time.”
The FAA tells Eyewitness News these investigations can take a year or longer to complete. There’s no word yet on a possible cause of the crash.