Monday, October 26, 2020

Grumman American AA-5A Cheetah, N26136: Fatal accident occurred October 25, 2020 in Woodbranch, Montgomery County, Texas

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Houston, Texas

Aircraft crashed under unknown circumstances. 

Date: 25-OCT-20
Time: 13:40:00Z
Regis#: N26136
Aircraft Model: AA5
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: FATAL
Total Fatal: 2
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: EN ROUTE (ENR)
Operation: 91
State: TEXAS

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email

WOODBRANCH, Texas (KTRK) -- A Pearland resident was one of the two people on board a plane that crashed over the weekend in a wooded area of Montgomery County.

Texas Department of Safety identified the two people who died in the crash as Nodal Aoki, 41, of Porter, and Karthik Balakrishnan, 46, of Pearland. Aoki was behind the controls of the small aircraft.

The crash happened in the area of Linnwood Street in Woodbranch, near US 59 around 8:40 a.m. Sunday.

Residents in the area reported hearing the plane go down and Texas DPS troopers responded to the scene.

"My house shook," one resident said. "I thought something hit the house, so I ran out the front door. I looked around and the neighbors were all running outside."

Ahmad Siddiqi was distraught and said the pilot involved was his longtime friend who leaves behind a wife and three kids.

"Even until now I cannot even believe that it was him because he is such a good person, such a good pilot, such an experienced, such an all-together very, very humble and kind human being," Siddiqi said.

Woodbranch mayor Mike Tyson said the incident was completely unexpected and that this was "something new to us" and said "we hope it never happens to someone again."

The Grumman American AA-5A Cheetah was registered to a certificated pilot in Porter, according to FAA records.

Investigators with the FAA are taking the lead on the investigation into what led to the crash. The NTSB is also investigating.