4 die when plane bound for Louisiana crashes in Texas

Indications are that the aircraft had engine problems while headed to Natchitoches Regional Airport

4 die when plane bound for Louisiana crashes in Texas
Four people died when a small plane headed to Natchitoches Regional Airport in Natchitoches, La., crashed in Texas the morning of Sept. 20, CBS affiliate and sister Gray TV station KBTX reports. (Source: KBTX Media)

(KBTX/KSLA) — Four people died when a plan bound for Louisiana crashed Sunday morning near Hilltop Lakes in Leon County, Texas, the CBS affiliate in Bryan, Texas, reports.

There were two couples on board the plane that was headed to Natchitoches Regional Airport, officials told KBTX, which also is a sister Gray TV station.

KLFY, the CBS affiliate in Lafayette, La., says the Texas Department of Public Safety has confirmed their identities as 59-year-old Kenneth Hix and 59-year-old Missy Lynn Hix, both of Lafayette, and 59-year-old Phillip Ackel and 58-year-old Pauline Ackel, of Natchitoches.

Flight records show the 1984 single-engine plane left Horseshoe Bay Resort near Marble Falls, west of Austin, Texas, at 9:59 a.m. Sunday.

The flight track shows that aircraft ascended to 18,000 feet before it descended less than an hour into the flight.

Officials said the pilot was in contact with the FAA before the crash, saying the plane was having engine problems.

The aircraft, which is registered to KMAC Bravo LLC in Lafayette, La., was attempting an emergency landing at Hilltop Lakes Airport when it crashed about 10:45 a.m. near the Hilltop Lakes stables north of Normangee, Texas, troopers said.

A witness told KBTX that the plane was flying extremely low to the ground and that the motor stopped turning when the plane started pulling up.

“He got over the putt-putt area across from the stables. He banked left, almost overcorrected and then banked right again,” said Justin DeLeon, a Hilltop Lakes resident.

“And then he banked left one last time. And when he did that second bank to the left, he pretty much nosedived straight vertical into the ground.”

DeLeon added that he and another man ran to the plane to see if they could help.

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