Local News

New details released in High Point plane crash

Posted April 9, 2011 9:48 p.m. EDT
Updated April 9, 2011 11:06 p.m. EDT

— It will be several weeks before federal aviation officials conclude their investigation into a plane crash that killed a Fuquay Varina woman and a Winston-Salem man last week, according to a preliminary report released Saturday from the National Transportation Safety Board.

Marcia Salmons Keaton, 50, was flying the Beechcraft Baron 58 owned by Charlotte-based charter company Jet Logistics when the aircraft plunged into a house on Brian Hollars Court in High Point, about 2 miles from the runway at Piedmont Triad International Airport, according to the safety report.

Passenger Dr. Thomas Littlejohn III of Winston-Salem, president of clinical research firm PMG, also was killed in the crash. No one on the ground was hurt.

The report details the moments before the crash. The plane was diverted from Winston Salem to the Piedmont-Triad airport in Greensboro due to inclement weather, including low visibility, light drizzle and fog.

Keaton tried to make an instrument landing, according to the report, but declared a "missed approach" and then lost radar contact.

The crash scattered debris throughout the High Point neighborhood, and a father and his two children narrowly escaped the house before an explosion and fire erupted, the report states.

A memorial service for Keaton was held in Virginia Beach this week.