China bestows military honour on killed woman fighter pilot

Beijing, Nov 15 (IANS) The Chinese military has conferred the title of “revolutionary martyr” on pilot Yu Xu, the first Chinese woman to fly the J-10 fighter jet who died in an accident during a routine flight training on Saturday.

Born in 1986, in Sichuan province, Yu joined the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Air Force in September 2005, and had flown four types of aircraft, Xinhua news agency reported.

She was one of the pilots selected to fly over Tian’anmen Square during the 2009 National Day parade and had flown the J-10 in air shows at home and abroad, according to air force spokesman Shen Jinke.

From country girl to China’s first female J-10 pilot, Yu devoted her most precious years to the building of a strong army, Shen said.

Yu’s death has saddened the country, with people mourning her in various ways. About 10 million people laid virtual wreaths at an online mourning hall set up for her.