Thursday, March 24, 2016

Harmon Rocket II, N729PS: Fatal accident occurred March 24, 2016 near Cheraw Municipal Airport (KCQW), Chesterfield County, South Carolina

Date: 24-MAR-16 
Time: 16:30:00Z
Regis#: N729PS
Aircraft Make: HARMON
Aircraft Model: ROCKET
Event Type: Accident
Highest Injury: Fatal
Damage: Destroyed
Flight Phase: UNKNOWN (UNK)
State: South Carolina



  Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email,  and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email

CHERAW, SC (WBTW) – Chesterfield County officials say the single occupant of a small, private plane that went down near the Great Pee Dee River Thursday morning was found deceased in the aircraft.

Sheriff Jay Brooks confirms his deputies discovered the plane after farmers north of Cheraw reported the aircraft went down around 10:15 a.m. in or near the Great Pee Dee River.

Chesterfield County Coroner Kip Kiser identified the pilot as 59-year-old Walker Jeter Hester of Atlanta.

A local pilot flew searchers over the area, and they did spot some debris and downed power lines, says Sheriff Brooks. Searchers later discovered the plane but had difficulty getting to the wreckage as the aircraft went down in very swampy terrain, explains Sheriff Brooks.

“After an extensive search and help with the local helicopter, some wreckage was spotted about a hundred yards off the river on the Chesterfield county side about two miles north of the town of Cheraw,” Sheriff Brooks says. “It took a while to get in there, [it] was very rough.”

There is no information yet on where the plane may have been flying from or what the destination for the aircraft may have been.

Original article can be found here:

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, S.C. – Investigators with the FAA are trying to determine why a small experimental aircraft crashed in Chesterfield County.

Deputies say the pilot 59-year-old Walker Hester of Atlanta was killed instantly.

Hester is well-known in aviation circles, he's a Navy Veteran and flew Boeing 777's commercially with Delta before he retired.

Deputies with the Chesterfield County Sheriff's Office learned about the crash from a farmer who witnessed it.

"After an extensive search and help with a helicopter some debris on the Pee Dee river in some of the thickest swamp in the County," said Sheriff Jay Brooks.

"Started a search with boats on foot and 4-wheelers, and the plane was located in a couple of hours."

Brooks says the farmer told him the aircraft clipped a power line and went straight down crushing the cockpit and killing the pilot instantly.

Hester kept his experimental aircraft at the Cheraw Airport and would often make the commute to get some hours in flying.

Story and video:

CHERAW, S.C. (WPDE) — One person has died after a small plane crashed in the woods near the Pee Dee River in Chesterfield County, according to Chesterfield County Sheriff Jay Brooks.

The person killed was the pilot of a small, single-engine plane, Brooks said.

The body of the pilot is currently in the custody of the Chesterfield County Coroner's Office and the identity will be released later, he said.

The plane was found about 100 yards into the woods from the Pee Dee River near Legion Road.

Crews are waiting on the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board before trying to move the wreckage, Brooks said. He said the area is too dense to get to the wreckage and it will likely have to be disassembled and floated back to the landing.

Original article can be found here:


Deputies were on the scene of a deadly plane crash near Cheraw, in a swampy area of the Pee Dee River Thursday morning, according to Chesterfield County Sheriff Jay Brooks.

The small plane was missing around 10:15 a.m. along the Pee Dee River, off of Highway 52 North, according to Brooks.

Brooks told Channel 9 that the pilot was killed and that nobody else was on the plane.

Officials said a helicopter flying over the scene found some wreckage in a swampy area of the Pee Dee River and Brooks said an eyewitness saw the plane go down in the river.

Officials said they're having trouble getting to where the wreckage was because of how remote the area is.

Original article can be found here:

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