The pilot was killed in a C-130 crash while fighting fires in Australia.

According to a post on the Montana Air National Guard - 120th Airlift Wing Facebook page, Lt. Col. Ian Mcbeth was one of three American pilots killed in a C-130 crash while battling wildfires in Australia. Mcbeth was a member of the 120th Airlift Wing in Great Falls, Montana.

"It is with a heavy heart that I inform you we lost a valued Airmen and friend last night. In performing his civilian duties as an air tanker pilot, fighting wildfires in Australia, Lt. Col. Ian Mcbeth’s plane went down. There were no survivors. Ian was instrumental in the flying success of the 120th Airlift Wing and will be dearly missed. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family as they navigate this painful and tragic situation. It is never an easy thing to manage, the loss of a brother in arms affects us all. Please know through difficult times such as these you are never alone. Don’t hesitate to reach out and lean on each other as we navigate this loss together."

-Col. Buel Dickson, 120th Airlift Wing Commander

Mcbeth was also an employee of Coulson Aviation, a privately owned company based in British Columbia, Canada. According to the company, he has spent his entire career flying C-130's and was a qualified Instructor and Evaluator pilot.