Russian Jet Makes Payson Appearance

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A low-flying jet fighter aircraft that startled Rim country residents Thursday morning about 7:50 a.m. was actually an L39 Russian trainer jet, according to Payson Municipal Airport Manager Ted Anderson.

"It's one of two in the state," Anderson said, "and we believe this one was out of Heber-Overgaard."

He said the aircraft would have been in the Payson Aerofair had it not been in the shop for a new paint job.

"It comes to Payson every once in a while, and from what we understand it took off too low towards the east," Anderson said.

With the collapse of the Soviet Union, "people who have always wanted something like that find them available," he said. "They have brokers who pick them up."

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