Pilot killed in Lee County plane crash

Investigators work the scene of a plane crash near Sanford
September 26, 2011 4:11:19 AM PDT
Authorities are investigating the crash of an experimental plane in Lee County.The pilot, Kirk Aragon of Apex, was the only person on-board, suffering second and third degree burns over 50 percent of his body, according to Deep River Fire Chief Larry Kelly.

He was airlifted to the UNC Jaycee Burn Center in Chapel Hill where he later died, according to hospital officials.

The plane crashed around 12:30 p.m. in a heavily wooded area at the dead-end of Breezewood Road, near Forest Oaks Road. According to FAA spokesperson Jim Peters, the crash site is one-and-a-half miles north of the Raleigh Executive Jetport, which is located at the Sanford-Lee County Airport.

Nearby residents rushed to the crash scene to help. Leola Carter said the pilot's clothes were still on fire when she reached him.

"I heard the plane coming over, and then I heard a loud pop," she said. "And right away, I knew it had to be that plane. By the time I got to the door, the smoke ... I saw smoke.

Those who rushed to the scene, were able to pull Aragon from the wreckage.

Authorites said Aragon was trying to land, but it's not clear why he crashed.

The FAA said the aircraft was a Velocity RG, which was built using a kit.

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