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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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October 31st, 2014
06:46 PM ET

Friend of Virgin Galactic pilots: They loved to fly, it was their passion

(CNN) – Former Washington Post Reporter Joel Glenn Brenner was a friend of the pilots aboard Virgin Galactic's doomed SpaceShipTwo test flight.

"They were some of the best flight pilots I've ever seen. For two young gentlemen, they had talents like you would not believe," Brenner said.

One pilot died, and one was seriously injured after SpaceShipTwo exploded Friday, suffering what the company called a "serious anomaly" during a test flight.

Neither pilot had gone through military training to achieve their skills, but had real, natural ability, said Brenner.

"They loved to fly. Flying was the passion. Flying was what they lived to do," she said.

For more of our interview, check out the video above.

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