Local News

Doctor Is Plane Crash Victim

Posted December 25, 1997 12:00 a.m. EST

— An Ahoskie physician has been confirmed as the sole fatality in a single-engine plane crash about 2 miles north of Raleigh-Durham International Airport on Christmas Eve.

A Cessna 172, owned by Dr. Robert Brown, took off near Terminal A, headed north, about 8 p.m. It disappeared from radar screens approximately 11 minutes later. Search crews were dispatched to a heavily wooded area near Mount Herman Road, near the Durham-Wake County line.

Brown's wife, Meryl, said the family had just returned to Raleigh-Durham International Airport from a Colorado ski trip. She was driving the children home to Ahoskie; he was to fly his Cessna to Florence, where he worked as an emergency room physician. He regularly commuted by plane between Ahoskie and Florence.

Dense fog and drizzle made search by helicopter impossible. Instead, four search teams worked the area by foot.

Right after the plane disappeared, the airport was shut down but reopened by 9:15 p.m.

Brown's official identification was made possible through dental records.