Newlywed Briton killed in Tiger Moth crash off Australian coast

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A British newlywed died when the plane he was flying crashed into the sea off the Australian coast.

Experts are investigating why the vintage Tiger Moth plane being flown by Alex “Jimmy” Rae, 26, plummeted into the water during an aerobatic flight.

Mr Rae, who was recently married to Alice, was killed along with 21 year-old French passenger Taissia Umenc.

Australian media reported that Mr Rae, who was originally from Easingwold, North Yorkshire, but living in Australia, radioed base before the accident saying: “Conducting aerobatics over 3,500 feet” but then there was silence.

Pieces of the plane, including parts of the propeller and its ID badge, subsequently washed up on to a beach after the accident off South Stradbroke Island, Queensland, on Monday.

In a statement released through Australian police, Mrs Rae, who met her husband when they were both pupils at Easingwold School, said he died “doing what he loved”.

She added: “On behalf of all Jimmy’s family and friends, we would like to thank everyone for their support and well wishes.”

A statement released by 
flight organisers Tiger Moth Joy Rides said: “Our hearts go out to the family of the international 
visitor who has tragically lost her life.

“As a small, tight-knit community we are devastated by the death of Jimmy Rae.

“Jimmy was an outstanding person who connected extremely well with his passengers and the rest of the team.”

The company has voluntarily suspended its operations while the Australian Transport Safety Bureau and Queensland Police investigate the crash.

Mr Rae was also a talented 
boxer and tributes have also 
been paid him in the boxing 
community on Australia’s Gold Coast.

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