By staff and wire reports
A Villa Rica man was killed Monday afternoon when the single-passenger airplane he was piloting crashed in southwest Paulding County.
The pilot was identified as Raymond K. Hicks, 67, of Villa Rica, according to a statement released Tuesday by the Paulding County Sheriff’s Office.
Preliminary information to the sheriff’s office indicated Hicks had departed Earl L. Small/Stockmar Airport in west Douglas County in his 1967 Mooney M20F single-engine plane. The Mooney is a very popular general aviation aircraft that has been in production for 60 years.
Deputies said that at approximately 12:59 p.m. Monday, Paulding emergency operators received a phone call from a witness who told them they observed a small single-engine plane “sputtering” and then “spiraling downward” toward a wooded area near The Georgian subdivision.
Paulding deputies, along with Paulding Fire and MetroAtlanta Ambulance personnel, responded to the scene where they eventually located the small plane approximately 25 yards into a wooded area off of Georgian Parkway.
Deputies said the plane was situated near a creek adjacent to Georgian Parkway between Hanover Drive and Stafford Lane. The crash site is about three miles from Stockmar Airport.
Due to the extreme impact of the plane, emergency personnel were unable to save the pilot, who was eventually pronounced deceased by the Paulding County Coroner’s Office.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) are conducting the investigation into why the plane crashed, as is routine in aviation accidents.
The sheriff’s office is asking anyone with any information about this crash to contact the NTSB or the FAA.