TUPELO, MS (WCBI) – The names of the second couple killed in a Monday plane crash in Tupelo have now been released. Lee County Coroner Carolyn Green has identified them as 69 year old Charles Torti and his wife 59 year old Carrie both of Kerrville Texas.
The FAA says the plane had just taken off from an overnight layover in Tupelo when the pilot reported seeing smoke in the cockpit. The private plane crashed shortly after take-off near the Tupelo Regional Airport.
The Tupelo fire chief and mayor say first responders raced to the scene, but there wasn’t much they could do.
“The plane was fully loaded with fuel, taking off to go to Virginia and the nature of the crash caused a fire. For those who saw the plume of smoke, you had a plane fully loaded with fuel departing for a relatively long trip,” said Tupelo Mayor Jason Shelton.
Shelton says he believes the accident may have been caused by a mechanical issue. At this point, authorities are not confirming the identities of anyone on board.
The Beech Bonanza was registered in Kerrville, Texas. Airport officials there say pilot Henry “Jack” Jackson, his wife Gwynn, and another couple left Sunday for Tupelo. Officials say Henry Jackson was an experienced pilot. He was vice commander of the Texas Wing Civil Air Patrol, a civilian group that helps the U.S. Air Force with search and rescue activities.
FAA spokeswoman Arlene Salac says the FAA will investigate and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the crash’s cause.