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Air Force Thunderbirds, jet team from France performing at annual air show in SW Ohio

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DAYTON, Ohio — The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds and a jet team from France are among the performers flying the skies in an annual air show in southwest Ohio.

The Thunderbirds were scheduled to will fly six F-16 Fighting Falcons fighter jets at the Vectren Dayton Air Show this weekend at the Dayton International Airport. The Breitling Jet Team from Dijon, France, also was set to perform at the show that typically draws thousands of fans.

Officials with the show say performers also include the U.S. Army's Golden Knights from Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Their Fokker C-31A troopship serves as the jump aircraft for the Army paratroopers who have demonstrated excellence in parachuting.

A wide variety of aircraft also will participate in the show's ground display. They include a replica of the historic Wright B Flyer and modern commercial cargo jets among other aircraft.

A fiery crash claimed two performers in the 2013 show that was missing military participation after federal budget cutbacks forced military acts to cancel that year. The Boeing Stearman biplane crash killed 45-year-old veteran wing walker Jane Wicker and 64-year-old pilot Charlie Schwenker.

Federal safely investigators have said pilot error was the probable cause of the crash that horrified spectators. The National Transportation Safety Board concluded the pilot attempted to fly "a modified airshow maneuver, which placed the airplane at low altitude and airspeed and out of position within the performance area."

The air show increased safety precautions in 2014, adding a third fire truck.

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