Grass Valley airman to fly 3 years after crash |

Grass Valley airman to fly 3 years after crash

Christopher Rosacker
Staff Writer

One day before the three-year anniversary of the plane crash that nearly killed him, Grass Valley native and Air Force Staff Sgt. Chris Curtis is scheduled to hop back in the pilot seat Monday.

Assigned to the 8th Special Operations Squadron, Curtis was a flight engineer on a CV-22 Osprey conducting a mission in Afghanistan on April 8, 2010 when the aircraft went down, according to the Special Operations Warrior Foundation, a nonprofit that supports the families of fallen and wounded special operations personnel.

The crash killed four of the service members on board and left Curtis fighting for his life, the SOWF reported. His initial prognosis was grim: severe blood loss, multiple fractures to the back, face, legs, left arm and pelvis.

Curtis underwent 14 surgeries to treat his injuries and rebuild battered limbs at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, where he subsequently spent months in rehabilitation to learn the most basic of functions, including how to walk, the SOWF reported.

But after years of rehabilitation, Curtis will take the sky again Monday, if the weather cooperates at Hurlburt Field, outside Fort Walton Beach, Fla., said Alton Dunham, chief of media there.

Check next week for a full story on Curtis.

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To contact Staff Writer Christopher Rosacker, email or call (530) 477-4236.

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