Air National Guard
1:13 pm
Fri August 29, 2014

Lt. Col. Morris "Moose" Fontenot Identified as Pilot in Fatal F-15 Crash

Colonel James Keefe addressed the media earlier this week at Barnes Air National Guard Base.
Colonel James Keefe addressed the media earlier this week at Barnes Air National Guard Base.
Credit Henry Epp / NEPR

The Massachusetts Air National Guard has released the name of the pilot who died Wednesday when his F-15 crashed in rural Virginia. 

Lt. Colonel Morris “Moose” Fontenot, Jr., was a decorated combat veteran with 17 years of experience flying F-15s.

An official statement said his active duty assignments included “numerous” deployments to the Middle East. Fontenot joined the Massachusetts Air National Guard this past February, and was the full-time Wing Inspector General and an instructor pilot for the 104th Fighter Wing, based at Barnes air base in Westfield.

On Wednesday morning, he flew the F-15C toward New Orleans for a radar upgrade. He reported an in-flight emergency, before losing radio contact.

The unit’s commander, Col. James Keefe, said in a statement, “We all continue to keep the Fontenot family in our thoughts and prayers during this very difficult time.” According to a bio of his wife posted online, Fontenot’s family – including two teenage daughters – lives in Longmeadow.