Former Navy linebacker Caleb King was killed in a fighter jet crash off the coast of Key West, Florida, on Wednesday. Family members confirmed the tragic news via social media.
King was aboard an F/A-18F Super Hornet that crashed while approaching the Naval Air Station during a routine exercise. The 2012 Naval Academy graduate was one of two aviators killed in the accident. According to a witness, his jet caught fire during a “massive malfunction.” “There was a fireball, and it just literally dropped out of the sky,” shared the Florida resident who saw that incident.
“We are sad to report both aviators have passed away,” said Commander Dave Hecht. “An investigation is underway to determine the cause of the mishap per Department of Defense policy.”
News of the incident quickly spread and the Navy football community took to social media to share heartfelt condolences. King was a standout linebacker for the Midshipmen from 2009-2011. He recorded 31 tackles during his senior year.
“Our hearts and deepest condolences go out to the entire King family,” said Navy head football coach Ken Niumatalolo. “We lost a dear brother and warrior. The entire Navy Football Brotherhood mourns the passing of a great American. We love you, Caleb!”