Distraught Father Assassinates Controller (Lake Constance, 2002)
Only one pilot obeyed the collision avoidance system
Kaloev, the father who killed Nielsen, the controller, was released after two years for good conduct and on mental grounds, to return home and treated as a hero for meting out justice that supposedly had not been done. Indeed, in 2016, he was awarded the highest regional medal by the local Ossetian government, the medal “To the Glory of Ossetia.”
We must remember many children in that community lost their lives on that holiday trip.
Kaloev was bitter because Nielsen whom he assumed responsible was allowed to return to work with no criminal charges at all, though we stand by our account here showing the controller did his best in exceptionally difficult circumstances. In fact, in a way he caused the disaster in trying to prevent it, and the problem was the pilot of one aircraft obeying him and not the TCAS. Had Nielsen not tried, there would as we have said been no collision.
Perhaps there is some consolation for Kaloev, in that now, aged 62 he has married a woman 22 years younger who in late December 2018 gave birth to a twin boy and girl, with him saying,
“Life has turned out so that I have children once more. And I have meaning in my life again. Doctors say that everything is fine with the babies… They were born healthy, everything is fine.”
A systems and managerial tragedy that marked a community; but almost unbelievably life goes on.
A 2017 movie, Aftermath, with Arnold Schwarzenegger is very loosely based on Kaloev.