Four bodies aboard a plane were recovered in the North Georgia mountains this past Thursday, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
A Beechcraft Bonanza, a specific type of plane, was reported missing over a week ago. Three occupants in this plane were from North Georgia and one occupant was from Ohio. The group was on the flight after someone won the trip as a door price at Gilmer County High School’s class of 1961 reunion (the 50th reunion for the class). The plane departed Ellijay airport about 80 miles north of Atlanta on Monday around 10:30 a.m. Phil Key was the pilot of the plane and from Ohio. The passengers were identified as Patricia Smith and Woodie and Mattie Pierce, from Georgia.
Gilmer County Fire Chief, Tony Pritchett, observed from a Georgia State Patrol helicopter the wreckage. The crash site was found around 3 pm last week on Wednesday. Crews found the bodies after lowering a searcher from a helicopter to reach the site on Rich Mountain.
More than 100 people, including the local emergency management, Gilmer County sheriff and police departments, the Georgia State Patrol, and the Civil Air Patrol, were involved in the search to find the missing plane and people. The actual crash site is in a remote area in Gilmer County.
As reported, another plane crash occurred on May 25 of this year when a small plane flying from Fulton County Airport in Atlanta to Hazard, Ky crashed in a remote area of the western North Carolina mountains. The pilot, Matthew Shuey, was killed. His three passengers, Tiffany Maggard, Kassie Robinson, and Miranda Morgan were tragically killed as well.