Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Helicopter pilot, Jeff Burke, two staff nurses (Kris Harrison, R.N. and Crystal Sollinger, R.N.) and a patient killed after a Duke Life Flight Eurocopter MBB BK 117C-2 crashed and burned in Perquimans County near Belvidere in eastern North Carolina

4 dead in Duke Life Flight helicopter crash in eastern NC

The North Carolina Highway Patrol says four people are dead in a Duke Life Flight helicopter crash in Perquimans County near Belvidere in eastern North Carolina. (WTVD)

Saturday, September 09, 2017 06:36PM
BELVIDERE, North Carolina (WTVD) -- The North Carolina Highway Patrol said four people are dead in a Duke Life Flight helicopter crash in Perquimans County near Belvidere in eastern North Carolina.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration, a Eurocopter MBB-BK went down around 11:30 Friday morning near Swamp Road and Sandy Cross Road close to the Amazon US Wind Farm East wind turbine complex.

The Perquimans County Sheriff's Office is handling the investigation.

Following the incident, Duke Health officials issued this statement:

"With deep sorrow we can confirm that a Duke Life Flight helicopter crashed early this afternoon near Belvedere, North Carolina. We are in the process of directly confirming information related to this incident and will share more information as it becomes available."

Authorities said the helicopter was flying to Duke Medical Center from Sentara Albemarle Medical Center when it crashed.

Duke University Hospital President Kevin Sowers said they are mourning the loss of two staff nurses, a pilot, and a patient.

The Duke employees have been identified as R.N. flight nurses Kris Harrison and Crystal Sollinger and pilot Jeff Burke.

The helicopter and its crew were based at Johnston Regional Airport, airport officials said.

"Our county's leadership joins many others around the region and the state in expressing our great shock and sadness over today's tragedy," said Jeff Carver, chairman of the Johnston County Board of Commissioners. "Our hearts, minds and prayers are with the families of those who were on board the Duke Life Flight aircraft, and we offer them our condolences and support in the difficult days, weeks and months ahead."

To honor the deceased, Duke University lowered their flags Friday evening.

Duke University Hospital has grounded their Life Flight service until further notice.

Duke has a fleet of aircraft to transport patients in need of critical care.

The sheriff's office has yet to release the names of those involved or how the crash occurred.

However, Sheriff Shelby White said an eyewitness claims they saw smoke coming out of the chopper as it was hovering before it crashed.


DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Duke Health on Saturday released the names of workers who died in a medical helicopter crash in northeastern North Carolina on Friday. 

The Duke Life Flight helicopter crashed in Perquimans County killing three crew members and a medical patient, the North Carolina Highway Patrol confirmed.  

The helicopter crashed around 11:45 a.m. after leaving Sentara Albemarle Medical Center, authorities said.

The three workers who died were flight nurses Kris Harrison, R.N. and Crystal Sollinger, R.N. and, the pilot, Jeff Burke, officials said.

“The Duke University Hospital and entire Duke University family continues to grieve their loss,” Sarah Avery, Duke Health spokeswoman said in a news release Saturday.

Officials from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) arrived Saturday to investigate. Teams were formed to investigate the crash site.

The Highway Patrol said the helicopter went down in an area near Swamp Road and Sandy Cross Road, near the Belvedere community, which is near the Gates County line.

The helicopter and crew were based out of Johnston Regional Airport in Smithfield, officials confirmed.

Duke Life Flight has been based at Johnston Regional Airport for more than 10 years.

The NTSB is formally in charge of the on-going investigation.


Date: 08-SEP-2017
Time: 11:30 LT
Eurocopter MBB BK 117C-2
Owner/operator: Air Methods Corp (AMC) opf Duke Life Flight
Registration: N146DU
C/n / msn: 9474
Fatalities: Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Other fatalities: 0
Airplane damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location: near Belvidere, Perquimans County, NC - United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature: Ambulance
Departure airport: Sentara Albemarle Medical Center Heliport (NC98)
Destination airport: Duke University North Heliport (NC92)
Four died after an air ambulance helicopter accident near the Amazon US Wind Farm East wind turbine complex in Perquimans County, NC.

There was a pilot, two staff nurses and a patient on board.


Pilot Terry Vallee, 67, of Arcadia, and his son, Preston Vallee, 42, killed after their Raytheon G36 Bonanza plane crashed in the vicinity of Benicia, California

The Raytheon G36 Bonanza plane that crashed and killed Pilot Terry Vallee, 67, of Arcadia, and his son, Preston Vallee, 42

Solano Co. Plane Crash Victims ID'd As Concord, McKinleyville Residents

BREAKING: Solano County sheriff's officials said the deceased pilot and co-pilot were father and son.

By Maggie Avants (Patch Staff) - Updated September 11, 2017 2:14 pm ET


CONCORD, CA — The Solano County coroner's office Monday identified a Concord resident and an Arcata resident as the father and son who died in a plane crash Saturday near Benicia. Solano County authorities say the pilot, Terry Vallee, 67, of Arcata, and his son, Preston Vallee, 42, of Concord were fatally injured when their single-engine plane crashed Saturday in the 2200 block of Lake Herman Road north of Benicia and west of Interstate Highway 680.

According to the Civil Air Patrol, the Beechcraft Bonanza BE-36 plane departed Saturday afternoon from Buchanan Field Airport in Concord and was headed to Arcata-Eureka Airport in McKinleyville in Humboldt County. When the plane had not landed Saturday night in McKinleyville, the CAP was activated to search for the aircraft.

The plane wreckage was located by a ground team at about 4 a.m. Sunday.

The Vallees were the only ones aboard the plane, authorities say.

Solano County sheriff's deputies reportedly waited at the crash site Sunday until investigators with both the Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board arrived.

Sunday night, FAA Spokesman Ian Gregor told Patch the plane went down sometime Saturday under "unknown circumstances."

Monday morning, NTSB Spokesman Terry Williams told Patch an NTSB investigator was at the crash site and that the federal agency was "in the very early stages of the investigation," which involves an examination of the scene, the aircraft and its engine, as well as a review of the pilot's record.

"We are in the fact-gathering stages of this investigation," Williams said.

The plane was manufactured by Raytheon Aircraft Company and had been registered to Vallee Development Corp. of Humboldt County since April 28, 2017, NTSB records show.

Here some info on the Vallee Development Corp., a developer (home builder) company established just a year ago.

Vallee Development Corporation

2511 Glendale Drive
Mckinleyville, CA 95519

Vallee Development Corporation is a privately held company in Mckinleyville, CA and is a Single Location business.

Categorized under Home Builders. Our records show it was established in 2016 and incorporated in CA. Current estimates show this company has an annual revenue of 75195 and employs a staff of approximately 1.

Small plane crashes in Benicia, CA, father and son killed

Updated: Sep 10 2017 10:38PM PDT

BENICIA, Calif. (KTVU) - A father and son were killed when a small plane crashed in Benicia on Saturday, according to officials.

Terry Vallee, 67, of Arcadia, and Preston Vallee, 42, were identified as the passengers on board. The crash site was discovered on Sunday.

A spokesman for the FAA says a single-engine Beechcraft BE36 crashed sometime Saturday after departing from Buchanan Field in Concord. The FAA says the passengers were on their way to the Arcata-Eureka Airport.


2 Dead In Solano Co. Plane Crash: Sheriff's Office
The plane was headed from Buchanan Field in Concord to Arcata-Eureka Airport, a spokesman for the FAA said.

By Maggie Avants (Patch Staff) - Updated September 11, 2017 2:05 pm ET

SOLANO COUNTY, CA — Two people — a father and a son — died in a plane crash this weekend near Benicia, the Solano County Sheriff's Office reported. Deputies responded at 4 a.m. Sunday to reports of the downed plane in the 2200 block of Lake Herman Road, just west of Interstate Highway 680, according to sheriff's officials.  

"Civil Air Patrol members had located the wreckage of a small single-engine Bonanza Beechcraft which had gone missing earlier in the day," sheriff's officials said. "Paramedics responded to find both the 67-year-old pilot and his 43-year-old son and co-pilot died as a result of the collision."

A spokesman with the Federal Aviation Administration confirmed there were two people aboard the plane.

"A single-engine Beechcraft BE36 crashed under unknown circumstances sometime Saturday in the vicinity of Benicia," FAA Spokesman Ian Gregor told Patch in an email Sunday night. "... The plane was flying from Buchanan Field in Concord to Arcata-Eureka Airport. The FAA and NTSB will investigate."

The plane left Saturday afternoon on its way to Arcata-Eureka Airport in McKinleyville but had not landed by Saturday night, according to Civil Air Patrol officials.
The CAP was activated Saturday night to search for the aircraft. Upon locating the plane wreckage early Sunday, deputies stood by until the FAA arrived, the sheriff's office said.

Serial Number E-3715 Status Valid
Manufacturer Name RAYTHEON AIRCRAFT COMPANY Certificate Issue Date 04/28/2017
Model G36 Expiration Date 04/30/2020
Type Aircraft Fixed Wing Single-Engine Type Engine Reciprocating
Pending Number Change None Dealer No
Date Change Authorized None Mode S Code (base 8 / oct) 52325123
MFR Year None Mode S Code (base 16 / hex) A9AA53
Type Registration Corporation Fractional Owner NO

Registered Owner

Street 2511 GLENDALE DR
County HUMBOLDT Zip Code 95519-9214


Engine Manufacturer Unknown Classification Unknown
Engine Model Unknown Category None
A/W Date None  

Date: 09-SEP-2017

Type: Raytheon G36 Bonanza
Owner/operator: Private
Registration: N7215J
C/n / msn: E-3715
Fatalities: Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities: 0
Airplane damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location: Solano County near Benicia, California - United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature: Private
Departure airport: Concord-Buchanan Field, CA (CCR/KCCR)
Destination airport: Arcata-Eureka Airport, CA (ACV/KACV)
The plane crashed under unknown circumstances. The wreckage was found on Sunday 10 September 2017. Both occupants died in the crash.


Pilot Shane Lee Buck, 39, and a 9-year-old girl killed after their Rans S-6ES Coyote II plane crashed near Burg Lake Aero Airport in Stonewall, Texas

Plane crash kills 9-year-old, and pilot Shane Lee Buck in Gillespie County

KXAN Staff Published: September 11, 2017, 2:27 am Updated: September 11, 2017, 5:34 pm

GILLESPIE COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — Two people are dead after a plane crash Sunday in Gillespie County, including a 9-year-old girl.

The Department of Public Safety says the plane crashed into a pasture about 1 mile south of Stonewall just before 7 p.m. Shane Lee Buck, 39  (? we are not sure about this age, because he looks at least 50 years old from his pictures), was flying his Rans Coyote II plane with a 9-year-old girl riding along. Both died at the scene.

Authorities haven’t named the little girl, but Fredericksburg ISD says she was a fourth-grade student at Fredericksburg Elementary and that grief counselors were on site all day Monday.

Neighbors of the pilot say they were shocked to hear the news and saw children playing in the backyard just last week.

“I could always sort of see them through their fence over there playing and laughing, but the children always seemed to get along really, really well. Lots of laughter that would come out of that backyard. I feel like that was a very, very happy family,” said Buck’s neighbor Natasha Grau.

Locals in Stonewall say Buck was renting a hanger less than a mile from where he crashed the plane. KXAN spoke to the owners of the private hanger, AeroBurg, who said they are working with investigators however they can.

The National Transportation Safety board is at the scene investigating and will likely be there two or three days as they document the area and examine the wreckage. Officials have not said what caused the plane to go down, but a preliminary report should be released next week.

See info on the Rans S-6ES Coyote II light planes here: https://www.rans.com/s-6es-coyote


Date: 11-SEP-2017
Time: -19:00
Rans S-6ES Coyote II
Owner/operator: Private
Registration: N112CD
C/n / msn: 10011423
Fatalities: Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities: 0
Airplane damage: Substantial
Location: Gillespie County south of Stonewall, TX - United States of America
Phase: Unknown
Nature: Unknown
Departure airport:

Destination airport:

The aircraft impacted pasture terrain near Burg Lake Aero Airport (30TX) in Stonewall, Texas. The airplane sustained substantial damage and the two occupants onboard were fatally injured.



Serial Number 10011423 Status Valid
Manufacturer Name RANS INC Certificate Issue Date 01/28/2016
Model S-6ES Expiration Date 01/31/2019
Type Aircraft Fixed Wing Single-Engine Type Engine 4 Cycle
Pending Number Change None Dealer No
Date Change Authorized None Mode S Code (base 8 / oct) 50031727
MFR Year 2001 Mode S Code (base 16 / hex) A033D7
Type Registration Individual Fractional Owner NO

Registered Owner
Street 5200 N COUNTY ROAD 1150

County MIDLAND Zip Code 79705-9601

Engine Manufacturer ROTAX Classification Experimental
Engine Model 912 Category Reg. Prior to 01/31/08
A/W Date 07/28/2007

Country music star Troy Gentry and the pilot, Evan Robinson, 34, killed after their Schweizer 269C helicopter crashed in a wooded area near runway 1 at the Flying W Airport, Medford, NJ

Monday, September 11, 2017 09:04PM
MEDFORD, N.J. (WPVI) -- We are learning more details about the helicopter crash in Burlington County, New Jersey that killed country music star Troy Gentry and the pilot.

The crash happened on Friday in Medford. Gentry, part of the popular duo "Montgomery Gentry," was scheduled to perform there that night.

The 30-year-old pilot, Evan Robinson, was giving Gentry an aerial tour when something went wrong.

On Monday, audio from first responders was released.

"About to make an emergency landing. Apparently he's hovering right now waiting for the fire department to arrive," one responder is heard to say.

The helicopter fell from the sky and into a field just south of the airport.

"Confirm. Did it crash? That's affirmative," a first responder said.

Troy Gentry killed in NJ helicopter crash. Jeff Chirico reports during Action News at 11 p.m. on September 8, 2017.

Robinson and Gentry were the only two people on board. Friends believe the crash must have been caused by a mechanical problem, because Robinson was a talented young pilot.

"He was an amazing young man. He was full of life," said Patti Dole, a friend of Robinson's.

Local authorities say incidents like these do happen, but they are unusual.

"There have been a handful of accidents in time that I've been here, over 22 years. Very often, thank goodness, not fatal. I believe we've had one or two here over the past few decades, but it's not a common occurrence," said Chief Richard Meder of Medford Twp. Police.

A public memorial for Troy Gentry has been scheduled for Thursday at the Grand Ol' Opry in Tennessee.

Back here in New Jersey, Robinson is being remembered as a true gentleman with a passion for flying.

"Every time you asked him how he was doing? 'I'm living the dream.' That's what he'd say," said Dole. "This tragedy shouldn't happen to someone so young and so talented and so caring. Very sad for all of us."

A preliminary report on the crash is expected in the new few days from the NTSB, but a full report won't be out until sometime late next year.


An investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board offered a few comments that explain Troy Gentry’s fatal helicopter crash on Friday (Sept. 8).

An invitation to take a helicopter ride was a “impromptu, spur of the moment” decision says Brian Rayner, speaking to People. The pilot was 30-year-old James Evan Robinson, described as a man who loved his job. Gentry was set to perform a Montgomery Gentry show on Friday night in Medford, N.J.

“Not long after takeoff, the pilot announced over the airport frequency — which was being monitored by a number of people — that he was having difficulty controlling engine RPM,” Rayner says. “A couple of different responses to that challenge were discussed, and he was performing an auto rotational descent to runway one.”

According to several sites including the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, an auto-rotational descent is when a helicopter hovers to the ground with no engine power. Upward force of the wind on the blades causes the rotors to spin. 

Robinson crash landed the helicopter short of the runway in a swampy area. There was substantial damage and both men were killed — Robinson at the scene and Gentry after he was transported to a nearby hospital.

Rayner also shared how further investigation will work, giving some sort of timeline of events and malfunctions. A preliminary report will be issued early next week, while the full report on the crash make take a year or longer to compile.

Robinson worked for Helicopter Flight Services, an FAA-approved helicopter flight school. People reports that he’d held his commercial pilot’s license since 2015.


2 dead after helicopter crashes near runway at South Jersey airport

Updated on September 8, 2017

By Amanda Hoover
For NJ.com

UPDATE: Troy Gentry, of the country duo Montgomery Gentry, was killed in the crash.

MEDFORD, NJ -- Two people are dead after a helicopter crashed at the Flying W Airport Friday afternoon, officials said.

The helicopter, a Schweizer 269, crashed into a wooded area off of Runway 1 at the airport, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

Medford Township Police Chief Richard Meder said police got a call about a "helicopter that was distressed" around 1 p.m.

"Shortly after our arrival the helicopter did go down. It went into a field south of the airport," Meder said.

The helicopter had taken off from Flying W Airport and was trying to land when it became distressed, he said.

Meder said the occupants were adult males, but he did not release any other details about them. He did not know if they were affiliated with Helicopter Flight Services, a helicopter flying school located at the airport.

The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the cause of the crash, which Meder said cause significant damage to the aircraft.

He said emergency crews were able to free one of the occupants, but that man died from his injuries after being taken to Virtua Hospital Marlton. The driver was pronounced dead in the helicopter and emergency crews will work to extricate his body while the investigation continues, Meder said.

Meder said police are also interviewing many witnesses who were at the airport and saw the lead-up to the crash. Fostertown Road was closed to traffic at 3:15 p.m. and Meder said the investigation would continue there for at least several more hours.

While Meder was speaking with reporters in a parking lot off of Fostertown Road, several vehicles pulled up with obviously distraught drivers and passengers, hugging one another and speaking with police. It was not clear if they were family members or friends of those involved in the crash.

A helicopter flying over the scene around 1:30 p.m. showed emergency personnel at the small airport with several fire trucks, police vehicles and ambulances. A helicopter resting in a grassy area was covered with a red tarp.

A spokesperson at the airport declined to comment on the crash.

A Montgomery Gentry concert scheduled to take place at the airport and resort was canceled Friday afternoon, the airport announced.


Montgomery Gentry Band Member Dies In Helicopter Crash In Burlington County September 8, 2017 11:05 PM

MEDFORD, N.J. (CBS/AP) — A member of a popular country band was one of two people who were killed in a helicopter crash in Burlington County, New Jersey on Friday afternoon.

The pilot, 30-year-old James Evan Robinson, declared an emergency and was trying to land the helicopter on approach when they crashed around 12:30 p.m. in a wooded area on Fostertown Road in Medford at the airport.

Troy Gentry, 50, half of the country duo Montgomery Gentry, was extricated from the helicopter and transported to Virtua Marlton Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

Robinson, who had just recently moved to Medford Township, was pronounced dead on the scene. Robinson was a native of Meigs Georgia and was a helicopter pilot at the Flight School located at the Flying W Airport.

Musician Troy Gentry of Montgomery Gentry speaks at the Red Carpet Radio presented by Westwood One Radio during the 50th Academy Of Country Music Awards at Arlington Convention Center’s Grand Hall on April 17, 2015 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images for dcp)

“It is with great sadness that we confirm that Troy Gentry, half of the popular country duo, Montgomery Gentry, was tragically killed in a helicopter crash which took place at approximately 1:00 p.m. today in Medford, New Jersey,” the band said in a statement.

The statement continues, “Troy Gentry’s family wishes to acknowledge all of the kind thoughts and prayers, and asks for privacy at this time.”

One individual was found dead at the scene and the other was transported to Virtua Marlton and pronounced dead at the hospital.

The Federal Aviation Administration says that it was a Schweitzer 269 helicopter that crashed.

Robinson was giving Gentry a tour of the area with the country band playing a concert at the resort attached to the airport tonight. That concert has been cancelled.

The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board will be investigating the crash.

Gentry was born on April 5, 1967, in Lexington, Kentucky, where he met bandmate Eddie Montgomery and formed a group based off their last names.

Montgomery Gentry had success on the country charts and country radio in the 2000s, scoring No. 1 hits with “Roll With Me,” ”Back When I Knew It All,” ”Lucky Man,” ”Something to Be Proud Of” and “If You Ever Stop Loving Me.” Some of the songs even cracked the Top 40 on the pop charts.

The band mixed country music with Southern rock. It was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry in 2009. The group released their debut album, “Tattoos & Scars,” in 1999.

Gentry is survived by his wife and two children.


Date: 08-SEP-2017
Time: c13:30 LT
Schweizer 269C
Owner/operator: Private
Registration: N2091E
C/n / msn: S1837
Fatalities: Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities: 0
Airplane damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location: Flying W Airport, Medford, NJ - United States of America
Phase: Approach
Nature: Private
Departure airport:

Destination airport: Flying W Airport (N14)
The helicopter crashed in a wooded area near runway 1 at the Flying W Airport, Medford, NJ.

According to media reports the pilot had reported a stuck throttle and was hovering to give emergency crews time to get to the scene before attempting a hard landing when the helicopter suddenly dropped to the ground.

The pilot died at the scene while country music star Troy Gentry, who was due to perform at an airport venue that evening, died later at a local hospital.