Driver Of The Shockwave Jet Truck, Chris Darnell, Dies In Crash At Michigan Air Show

Shockwave crash

The driver of the legendary Shockwave Jet Truck, Chris Darnell, has passed away after after getting into a high speed crash at an air show in Michigan on Saturday.

The 40-year-old was driving the semi-truck with jet engines, and traveling at a speed of more than 300 miles per hour down a runway at the time of the wreck at the Battle Creek Field of Flight Air Show, according to CBS News.

Chris’s father, Neal, shared via Facebook post:

“We have lost our youngest son Chris in an accident doing what he loved; performing with Shockwave.”

He added that the reason for the accident was due to a “mechanical failure on the Jet Truck.”

You can see in the shared video footage that Darnell loses control of the truck, as it burst into flames and crashed, flipping over multiple times.

Everything appeared to be fine with the vehicle leading up to the wreck.

The truck is known as the “world’s fastest semi,” reaching a record speed of 376 mph once before.

It was modified to carry three jet engines on the back, reaching 36,000 horsepower along with 21,000 pounds of thrust.

Although the airshow event’s activities were cancelled for the rest of Saturday, police allowed the event to resume on Sunday, as police, fire officials, and the Federal Aviation Administration had launched investigations into the crash.

Neal continued:

“We are so sad. Just one month ago Chris turned 40. He was so well loved by everyone who knew him. Chris so loved the Air Show business. He was ‘Living the Dream’ as he said.”

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Darnell family.

He was given a tribute the following day featuring a number of the performers and a few flying teams performing the Missing Man Formation, including the USAF Thunderbirds.


A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock