A man killed in a light plane crash with three friends sent a photo to his mum of the group shortly before the aircraft went down.
Daniel Shedd texted his mum just as the plane took off from a small airport in west St Louis County in the US state of Missouri, with his friend Joshua Sweers in the pilot’s seat.
Daniel Schlosser and John Camilleri were passengers in the four-seater plane along with Mr Shedd, taking off at 3.19pm (local time) and crashing at 3.46pm, according to news site KSDK.
Mr Shedd’s dad Charles drove the men, aged between 35 and 39, to the airport, where they intended to set off to his son’s home in St Charles to help with some renovating.
“This was his [Daniel’s] first time flying with them and I’m not sure if he had ever been in a small plane before. He was looking forward to the trip,” Charles told the publication.
He had been tracking the flight using an app on his phone and became concerned when the signal for the plane dropped off.
“According to this site, that tail number took off from Creve Coeur and basically went away a half hour later. I thought, ‘There’s something wrong’ I don’t know why it stopped giving updated information,” he said.
Charles said he tried calling his son after he was due to arrive but was unable to get through, then his wife received a notification saying there had been a crash.
“I called Carlinville police and got to the sheriff and ultimately talked with the coroner,” he said, describing Daniel as “the most wonderful son a parent could possibly have”.
Police and the Federal Aviation Administration have launched an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the crash.
The aircraft had recently passed standard inspections and was in “excellent condition” according to Charles.
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