Illinois couple killed in plane crash while they were en route to visit son, grandkids for Thanksgiving
Patty and Joe Kreher were traveling from St Louis to North Carolina when their twin-engine Piper PA-30 crashed in Winston-Salem
WINSTON-SALEM, NORTH CAROLINA: A couple died in a plane crash while they were travelling to North Carolina to visit their family for Thanksgiving, on Saturday, November 19. The couple's family informed WGHP that Patty and Joe Kreher of Freeburg, Illinois, were on their way to meet their son and grandchildren when the tragedy happened. According to the family, the two had made the same trip, from St Louis to North Carolina, numerous times.
As per the Winston-Salem Journal, spokeswoman for the Winston-Salem Police Department Kira Boyd confirmed a small plane crash on Saturday morning in a neighborhood in which two people died. The twin-engine Piper PA-30 crashed northeast of downtown, the Winston-Salem Fire Department and the Federal Aviation Administration said. The collision happened around 11:15 a.m, People reported.
According to information from FlightAware.com, the aircraft made a circle over the airport in London, Kentucky, for an hour and 45 minutes after taking off. Then, it was rescheduled to land in Smith Reynolds at 11.10 am. Photos from the accident showed the aircraft broken in two while the ruin was visible just a few feet away from a house.
According to WGHP, the debris was cleared by National Transportation Safety Board authorities on Monday morning. The plane was disassembled by crew members using saws before it was eventually carried away in a pickup truck.
Although no more casualties have been recorded, Sergeant CG Byrd of the North Carolina State Highway Patrol told WGHP that the plane crashed in a wooded section of a residential area. Before the plane crashed, the pilot reportedly told the control tower that one of their engines was "not making as much power as the other one."
According to Susan Harrison-Bailey, who spoke to the Winston-Salem Journal, the plane came down close to her backyard but missed her house. "I couldn't tell that it was a plane. There was a lot of smoke ... I could see it was smashed into the trees. It landed straight up and down," Harrison-Bailey reportedly said. The National Transportation Safety Board and the FAA will reportedly look into the crash.
The deaths of the couple has left their family and friends devastated. "It's just a tragedy that this happened so close to Thanksgiving. Our prayers are out for this family," Freeburg Mayor Seth Speiser said, as per KSDK.