Wednesday morning (May 2), may have proven to be a not-so-good day for flying for some. A Southwest Flight 957 from Midway Chicago headed to Newark; New Jersey experienced a cracked window while in-flight. Although the plane made an emergency landing and none of the 76 passengers were hurt, the incident was still terrifying.

The horrific events of the day did not end with Southwest’s emergency landing; tragedy struck hundreds of miles away in Georgia.

The National Guard

No, Southwest isn’t the only transportation entity that experienced flight issues Wednesday morning.

The US military experienced tragedy in Port Wentworth, Georgia just hours after Southwest experienced its window issue.

The US Air Force confirmed that one of their Air National Guard WC-130 cargo planes, generally used for weather reconnaissance, crashed late Monday morning (May 2). According to reports from the New York Times and CNN, the plane carrying nine airmen originally came from the 156th Air Wing in Puerto Rico but had just taken off from the Georgia military base and was headed to Arizona for decommissioning. It should also be noted that the plane had recently undergone routine maintenance over the last few days and was cleared for flight.

What happened?

CNN reported that witnesses said it looked like the pilot tried to avoid cars and people on the ground because the plane spiraled midair avoiding hazardous waste trucks and a gas station before it smashed into the earth and exploded.

They are calling the pilot a hero.

The highway and the crash site were littered with smoldering debris that lay beneath the enormous smoky blaze and wreckage that greeted first responders called to the scene. The smoke filled area made it challenging for investigators and officials to reach the bulk of the accident.

The crash happened just a few miles from the Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport.

A spokesperson from the airport said that although the crash didn’t happen on airport property, the “ground shook like a bomb was going off” nonetheless.

Thoughts and prayers

Puerto Rico has certainly had its share of tragedy in the past 12 months, this crash just adds to the pile of heartache. A spokesman for the military, Major Paul Dahlen, also acknowledge the pain of losing servicemen saying it was a “sad day for the Puerto Rican National Guard.

” Adding to the loss of life is the loss of answers. It may be some time before investigators have all the answers to their many questions. In the meantime, the country stands in solemn solidarity to mourn the loss of our own.