March 21, 2011

Dead in plane crash were woman, kids

Investigators with the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board investigate the wreckage of a Cessna 210 that crashed Sunday. A woman and her two children were killed in the crash. The plane took off from John Wayne airport and crashed near the Barstow-Dagget Airport. (KAREN JONAS, DESERT DISPATCH)

Orange County Register

BARSTOW – A woman and two children were killed in a fiery plane crash on Sunday near a San Bernardino County airport, authorities said.
The single-engine Cessna 210 departed from John Wayne Airport and was headed to Henderson Executive Airport in Las Vegas when it crashed, said Ian Gregor, a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman.

The woman is believed to be Katie Morrison, a Truckee, Calif., resident who is licensed as a private pilot. Officials have not identified who was aboard the plane. Her husband, Jim Morrison, confirmed his wife and two children, Wyatt and Hanna, were killed in the crash, according to Fox 40 News in Sacramento.

Coroner officials have not yet positively identified the bodies of those aboard the plane; they were described as a woman, a male child and a female child.

"The coroner's office is having to conduct extensive scientific means to identify the bodies," said Arden Wiltshire, a San Bernardino Sheriff's Department spokeswoman.

The plane crashed at 12:40 p.m., about 2.5 miles southeast of the Barstow-Dagget Airport. The Barstow Desert Dispatch newspaper reported that the crash site was about two miles south of I-40.

Witnesses told The Associated Press that the plane appeared to spiral out of the sky as it plunged into a hillside.

According to FAA records, the fixed-wing airplane is registered to Debt Free LLC.

The address registered for the 1978 airplane comes back to Jim Morrison Construction in Truckee. According to the company's website, Jim Morrison Construction builds luxury homes in premier golfing and skiing communities. Morrison is a professional skier.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash. The final determination of the cause could take months, said Mike Huhn, an investigator with the NTSB. The NTSB will look more closely at the pilot — including her experience, training and health — the plane and its engine and environmental factors such as the weather to determine the final cause of the accident, said Hunh.

This is the second fatal plane crash in the area in two weeks. A plane that crashed near Ludlow on March 8 killed Anthony D’Allen, 68, of Senoia, Ga.