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Search for missing pilot turns from rescue to recovery effort

by Rob Sexton
20th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

10/18/2009 - SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. (AFNS) -- The commander of the 20th Fighter Wing, Col. Joe Guastella, issued the following announcement Oct. 17 regarding Capt. Nicolas Giglio, missing since a mid-air collision Oct. 15:

"In spite of an intense search conducted by hundreds of professionals from the Coast Guard, Navy and Air Force, we have found no trace of Capt. Nicholas Giglio.

"However, our investigation of the mishap revealed that the mid-air collision itself was traumatic. The speed and geometry of the impact breached the canopy of Captain Giglio's aircraft and leads us to conclude the trauma he sustained was fatal.

"He never had the opportunity to eject.

"We will make every effort to recover Captain Giglio's aircraft and his remains. We are grateful to all those involved in the search effort.

"We will continue to investigate the accident. The thoughts and prayers of all of us at Shaw are with Nicholas Giglio, his family, and his friends."

Captain Mike McAllister, U.S. Coast Guard-Charleston, announced this evening that the Coast Guard was suspending the search-and-rescue operation it has been conducting since the accident.

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