Antique plane goes down in Hood River, killing 2


The small plane sputtered after liftoff, made a sharp turn, then a nosedive

HOOD RIVER, Ore. (KOIN) — Two people died when a small plane crashed during a popular fly-in event Friday morning at Hood River’s Ken Jernstedt Airfield.

Hood River deputies said the plane was in the air after takeoff around 10:10 a.m. but then sputtered before making a right turn and a nosedive. It plunged into a field near a hanger. Nothing

The pilot, 56-year-old Matthew Titus of Turlock, California and passenger 55-year-old Ben Davidson of Hood River died at the scene. It’s unclear at this time what caused the crash.

The Hood River Sheriff’s Office said the plane was an antique 2-seat, single-engine aircraft called a Piper PA-18 Super Cub. Deputies said it was likely attempting a field takeoff. The 2 main runways at the airport were not affected by the crash.

“There’s a lot of people here and this is a pretty tight-knit community and so this is a pretty tragic time for them,” said Deputy Joel Ives.

The crash marked a tragic start to a typically fun-filled weekend in Hood River. The fly-in is organized by the Western Antique Aeroplane and Automobile Museum (WAAAM), which calls itself a “living museum” and contains working antique planes.

Deputy Ives said the plane that crashed may have been part of WAAAM’s fleet.

“Sympathies with the family,” said Jeff Burns, an attendee at the fly-in. “It’s a terrible way to start a wonderful event but accidents happen in airplanes just as they do in automobiles.”

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating.

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