Cory Fulton Lidle (March 22, 1972 – October 11, 2006) was an American professional baseball player. A right-handed pitcher, Lidle spent nine seasons in Major League Baseball with seven different teams. Lidle was killed when the small aircraft he owned crashed into a residential building in New York City.
He is also known as Cory Fulton Lidle.
On October 11, 2006, Lidle and co-pilot/flight instructor Tyler Stanger were flying a Cirrus SR20 airplane when it crashed into the Belaire Apartments complex at 527 East 72nd Street on New York City's Upper East Side, killing them both. The plane was flying above the East River past the Queensboro Bridge toward restricted airspace. A strong wind from the east due to an incoming front caused the plane to be blown into the building as it was making a 180-degree turn. In addition to the deaths of Lidle and Stanger, 26 were injured in the accident, about half of them New York City firefighters.
Lidle was the third Yankee to die in a plane crash. The prior two were catcher Thurman Munson (on August 2, 1979) and pitcher Jim Hardin (on March 9, 1991). Yankees owner George Steinbrenner described Lidle's death as a "terrible and shocking tragedy that has stunned the entire Yankees organization" and offered his condolences to Lidle's wife and six-year-old son. On October 12, 2006, before the 2006 NLCS game in New York City between the New York Mets and the St. Louis Cardinals, both teams and all spectators observed a moment of silence in Lidle's memory.
The Yankees wore black armbands during the entire 2007 season in memory of Lidle. On April 2, 2007, Cory's widow Melanie and his son Christopher both threw the ceremonial first pitch on Opening Day at Yankee Stadium. Melanie Lidle attended the 2007 graduation ceremony at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, California. The community college's aviation team flew across the graduation field during the ceremony to pay respect to both Lidle and Stanger.