One of the two Punta Gorda, Fla. men who died in a small plane crash Sunday in Warren County was a Wilmington High School graduate who attended Wright State University in the early 1990s.
Eric Hackney, 43, attended WSU from fall 1991 to spring 1993, according to a university spokesman. Online profiles list Hackney as the owner and developer of the North Winds Estate in Wilmington and as managing member of Sweepstakes Cabinet Solutions LLC.
The other man, 36-year-old Jesse Loy, was a pilot and listed as the owner of the plane that crashed in a wooded area near Camp Kern in Turtlecreek Twp. Online profiles list Loy as a project manager at H2O911 Restoration. A blog also shows a photo documentation indicating Loy restored the plane.
A spokesperson from the National Transportation Safety Board said that, unofficially, the crashed plane was suspected by the Federal Aviation Administration to be a Van’s RV-4 registered with the aircraft number N2626C. That number matches the flightaware.com website with Loy’s information.
The NTSB spokesman said an official preliminary report about the crash should be complete in about a week.
Hackney and Loy were flying from Florida to visit friends in Warren County when their plane went down in woods along the Little Miami River.
Emergency crews were first dispatched around 5:45 p.m. Sunday after callers reported smoke and flames coming from a low-flying plane.
The crash scene was in a remote, wooded area, east of Lebanon in Turtlecreek Twp., on property near a Church of God camp between the YMCA camp and Moore-Saur Road.
“They both died from the impact, blunt force trauma,” said Doyle Burke, chief investigator at the Warren County Coroner’s Office. “What brought them down, that’ll be the NTSB,” he said.
The Warren County plane crash was the third in the area in three months.
Rain and thunderstorms are believed to have contributed to the crash that killed a Michigan man and his wife in Clark County on July 22, according to the NTSB.
Levon King, 81, and his wife, Gloria King, 85, died when their experimental aircraft crashed in a cornfield in Harmony Twp. seven miles east of Springfield-Beckley Municipal Airport.
The NTSB continues to investigate the fatal crash involving Clayton Heins, 20, a student pilot from Arcanum, and his friend, Jacob Turner, 19, of Greenville, on Sept. 14, in Darke County. The plane was reportedly headed for the Moraine Air Park when it crashed in a cornfield.