Captain Thomas McQueen died yesterday in a training accident at 4 Wing Cold Lake after his plane crashed inside the Cold Lake Air Weapons Range in Saskatchewan. Capt McQueen was originally from Hamilton.
The flag at Hamilton City Hall is now lowered to half-mast, and will remain lowered until after Capt McQueen's funeral.
Mayor Fred Eisenberger issued the following statement:
Our thoughts and prayers are with Captain McQueen’s family, friends and colleagues, the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Canadian Armed Forces during this difficult time.
Mayor Eisenberger has instructed Staff to have the flag outside Hamilton City Hall be lowered to half-mast.
General Jonathan Vance, Chief of the Defence Staff, put it well in his official statement:
“Every day, members of the Canadian Armed Forces prepare themselves for the responsibility of shielding their fellow citizens from harm. That training is both rigorous and demanding. It has to be.
“Sadly, that training has claimed the life of one of our own. Captain Thomas McQueen was a dedicated RCAF officer with 10 years of service. To his comrades and coworkers at 4 Wing Cold Lake, I offer my sympathy. I encourage you to seek solace and support in this difficult time.”
Capt. McQueen's death is the second service death in a week for the Canadian Armed Forces.
Master Seaman Guillermo Morales Castellon died Friday following an industrial accident at 443 Maritime Helicopter Squadron located in Patricia Bay, near Victoria, British Columbia.
Hamilton's Veterans Committee's regular meeting is scheduled for today at 4pm.