The victims of a small plane crash in a remote area north of Seligman, Arizona, were identified on Monday as Chad and Brandi Wilson of Wichita Falls, according to the Coconino County Medical Examiner’s Office.
The Wilsons were the owners of Wilson Contracting in Wichita Falls, multiple family friends told KXAN.
Around 11:48 a.m., Arizona time, on Tuesday, September 13, sheriff’s deputies out of the Williams/Grand Canyon Substation were dispatched to an area north of Seligman regarding a missing aircraft.
Sheriff’s deputies notified the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of the one-engine Piper aircraft that had gone off the radar between Kingman and Flagstaff amid a heavy rainstorm.
Deputies could not reach the area, so an Arizona Department of Public Safety Air Rescue helicopter was called to assist with the search. The helicopter was able to locate the crash scene around 1:30 p.m., Arizona time.
Jon Paxton with the sheriff’s office said there had been bad storms in the area, and the air rescue helicopter had to leave the scene after locating the crash site as more storms moved in.
Detectives returned to the site the following day, and the bodies were removed by an air rescue helicopter back to a staging area before being transferred to the medical examiner’s office.
Personal items at the scene indicated the victims were the Wilsons, both aged 42. The medical examiner also confirmed their identities with IDs found at the scene.
Flight information shows the plane left Wichita Falls on September 13 and was headed to Las Vegas. The aircraft was registered to Chad Wilson.
The National Transportation Safety Board was notified of the crash and has taken over the investigation.
Wichita County Sheriff David Duke said his office was first notified of the missing aircraft by people the Wilsons were going to meet before a deputy made contact with a member of the Wilson family at their home.