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Vacaville Airman Loses Life While Deployed Overseas

Air Force Capt. Francis Imlay was killed during an accident involving a F-15 aircraft near a base in Southwest Asia.

A Vacaville airman has paid the ultimate price for his country while serving overseas as part of Operation Enduring Freedom.

The Department of Defense announced that U.S. Air Force Capt. Francis D. Imlay, 31, of Vacaville, died on March 28 from injuries received in an accident involving an F-15 aircraft near a base in Southwest Asia. He was assigned to the 391st Fighter Squadron, Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho.

The accident happened at 9:06 a.m., MST, approximately 15 miles outside of the base in Southwest Asia.

Captain Imlay was known among his fellow airmen as “Piston,” according to the DOD. 

“It is with a heavy heart I inform you we lost a valued member of the Gunfighter family yesterday,” said Col. Ron Buckley, 366th Fighter Wing commander. “Today we mourn the loss of one of our warriors, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and coworkers during this time. He was a true professional and his dedication to the Gunfighter family will not soon be forgotten.”

Imlay, a native of Vacaville, was assigned to the 391st Fighter Squadron “Bold Tigers” and played a vital role in supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

More than 300 Mountain Home AFB Airmen remain deployed in support F-15E overseas contingency missions designed to deliver combat air power for joint operations and to meet ground commander requirements.

The cause of this incident is still under investigation.

M.Owens March 29, 2012 at 10:49 PM
Prayers for his family.
Carlos Villatoro March 29, 2012 at 11:19 PM
RIP Capt. Imlay. Thank you for your service. My thoughts are with your family.
Marcy van der Linden March 30, 2012 at 03:51 AM
My thoughts are with Capt. Imlay's family and friend at their time of loss. Thank you Capt Imlay for serving our country, may you Rest In Peace.
Ed Bondoc March 30, 2012 at 02:37 PM
He gave up his life for the price of freedom and protecting our way of life. Solano County or the State of Calif should fly the flag half mast to honor him and his sacrifice. My prayers to the Imlay Family. Rest in Peace, Capt Imlay -- a hero.
James Lum April 05, 2012 at 04:43 PM
My heart sunk when his wife mentioned his aircraft went down. We all tried our best to help the family on the flight from Boise to Denver. My thoughts are with the family and friends.

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