VAN ZANDT COUNTY — The wreckage of a small plane that disappeared from radar near Terrell on Saturday morning was found hours later in rural Van Zandt County. All four people on board were killed.
An all-day search by the Civil Air Patrol and law enforcement personnel started around 9:40 a.m., shortly after the Beechcraft Bonanza took off from Northwest Regional Airport in Roanoke and the pilot lost communication with the control tower.
The Federal Aviation Administration said the last reported position of the aircraft with tail number N32GP was about 25 miles southeast of Terrell.
The wreckage was discovered by a Department of Public Safety helicopter in a pasture near the intersection of FM 90 and County Road 2702 in Van Zandt County, about 25 miles southeast of Kaufman and 22 miles southwest of Canton.
Aerial views of the scene by daylight Sunday showed only small pieces of the aircraft remained, scattered over a wide area of the pasture.
The crash site was more than half a mile from the nearest road. Rescue personnel had to walk part of the way because of muddy terrain.
No additional information was available about the identity of the pilot or the passengers. An FAA spokesman said the plane was registered to an address in Southlake.
Federal records show that the plane that crashed had six seats and was built in 1985.
The Beechcraft Bonanza is a single-engine plane that has been in continuous production since 1947.
Saturday's tragedy is the second deadly crash in the past two weeks of a plane that took off from Northwest Regional Airport in Roanoke.
Last month, Charlie Yates and Chris Pratt died shortly after takeoff. Yates — a flight instructor — was helping Pratt "brush up" on his flying skills when the Piper Arrow lost altitude.
The NTSB is still investigating the cause of that crash.