A 38-year-old California man has died in a plane crash near the York Airport in Thomasville.
Brian Robertson, of Huntington Beach, was the only person on board the plane when it went down about a mile south of the airport, in a farm field near Martin Road in Jackson Township, at around 5:30 p.m. Thursday.
According to a witness, the twin-engine plane – a corporate-type Cessna Conquest – was approaching the airport and lost power to an engine before it spiraled to the ground.
abc27 News has learned Robertson contacted the airport to advise of his approach when he was about 20 miles away.
He later made a second call to the airport to report that the plane had lost one of its engines.
Officials from the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board were to begin an investigation on Friday.
Robertson was the CEO of a company called Amonix, a designer and manufacturer of concentrated solar power systems, according to the company's website.
A statement on the website says the company is “devastated” by his death and that its “thoughts and prayers are with his family.”
Robertson was flying from Long Beach, California and was just shy of his destination after more than six hours in the air.
Brian Harris was on his way to a wrestling match when he saw the plane go out of control.
“I looked over and I was like 'that plane looks like its doing flips and stuff.' It looked like it was doing barrel rolls, and then I saw it go down,” Harris said.
His brother Chris saw it, too.
“I was kind of scared, like what I see in movies I was looking for an explosion, but not really,” he said. “I was hoping no one would get hurt.”