Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Cessna 560 Citation V, N188CW: Fatal accident occurred December 20, 2018 near Fulton County Airport (KFTY), Atlanta, Georgia

The leadership team of Sunshine Enterprise prior to December 20th, 2018 plane crash in which four members died. From left are Mike McAnnally, who was not on the flight, and victims Danielle Mitchell, Wei Chen, Bruce Pelynio and John Chen. 

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

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Atlanta, Georgia

Crashed due to unknown circumstances.


Date: 20-DEC-18
Time: 17:09:00Z
Regis#: N188CW
Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Aircraft Model: 560
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: FATAL
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: TAKEOFF (TOF)
Operation: 91

Lower Burrell native Bruce Pelynio died in a private plane crash Thursday shortly after takeoff from Atlanta-Fulton County Airport in Atlanta, according to the Aviation Safety Network.

Pelynio, a 1971 Burrell High School graduate, was one of four killed in a single-engine plane crash that is under investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration.

All were employees of Sunshine Enterprise Inc., a Memphis-based wholesaler and distributor of construction and industrial equipment. They were flying from Atlanta to Memphis, according to Memphis newspaper The Commercial Appeal.

Three of the deceased, including Pelynio, were top executives of Sunshine Enterprise, which included the company founder and CEO Wei Chen of Memphis, who owned and piloted the plane Thursday.

Pelynio, 65, of Memphis, Tenn., is survived by his wife, Laurie Lawler Pelynio, and twin daughters, Shannon Pelynio of Memphis and Kelsey Pelynio Stiles of Windham, Maine. He has a sister, Dr. Jan K. Richardson, who lives in Durham, N.C.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Delores and Stephen Pelynio of Lower Burrell.

Burrell High School alumni passed on their condolences on their Facebook page, “Burrell High School — Class of 1971.”

Michael Lukas wrote, “Sorry to hear about Bruce…enjoyed the good time with him at Penn State and Burrell..Prayers sent..deepest sympathies Pam.”

Pelynio was president and CEO of Heli Americas, a Memphis-based company and Sunshine Enterprise equity partner he founded in 2007, specializing in material handling products.

Pelynio worked in the material handling industry for 42 years, according to Heli Americas’ website.

He earned a bachelor of science degree in accounting in 1975, according to a Penn State alumni website.

“Bruce loved life and was at his best when he was with people,” family said in an obituary posted by Memorial Park Funeral Home and Cemetery in Memphis.

Pelynio was a car enthusiast and drove an Aston Martin. He was an active member in the British Car Club and a lifelong Nittany Lions fan, according to the Memphis funeral home.

In 2009, when Pelynio’s father was still alive, he arranged for his father to fly on a World War II airplane, a B-17, during the plane’s four-day visit at the Arnold Palmer Regional Airport in Latrobe.

Stephen Pelynio, a World War II pilot, said in an Aug. 14, 2009, Valley News Dispatch article that his son’s surprise gift of the plane ride in the cockpit was “the greatest gift I could receive.”

Details of arrangements were not available. The Memphis funeral home suggested that donations in Pelynio’s honor should go to the Salvation Army and Tunnel2Towers.org. 

Original article can be found here ➤ https://triblive.com

ATLANTA - Residents are still in shock after witnessing a small plane come straight down Thursday and crash into a northwest Atlanta park.

Wreckage from the deadly plane crash was hauled away Friday as family members tried to cope with what happened. 

One of the victims, Danielle Mitchell, was engaged to be married and was getting ready for the holidays.

Channel 2's Tom Jones spoke with members of Mitchell’s family, who has been understandably upset.

The family visited the crash site Friday to try and process the tragedy. Channel 2 Action News confirmed the woman was with her boss, successful businessman and world-renowned pilot, Wei Chen, on his corporate plane.

Mitchell had hoped to head home to Memphis, Tennessee, then come back to Atlanta for the holidays. But now that won't happen.

"I spoke to her a few days ago. She was going to be coming to Atlanta," Mitchell's uncle, David Mitchell Jr., said.

David Mitchell Jr. said his 32-year-old niece was looking forward to hanging out with family in Atlanta for Christmas.

Mitchell was one of four people who died when the Cessna 560 Citation V plane crashed into a football field at English Park Thursday around noon.

The aircraft had just taken off from Charlie Brown Field and was headed to Memphis where Mitchell and Chen were both from.

Channel 2 Action News learned Chen had previously set a record by being the first Chinese citizen to fly a single-engine plane around the world.

"We have found a cockpit voice recorder and it's going to be taken back to D.C.," said Heidi Kemner, with the National Transportation Safety Board.

Jones was at the scene as the NTSB began its investigation into what went wrong.

Crews spent the day picking up plane parts to take to Washington, D.C., for examination.

The agency said it will leave no stone unturned in working to figure out what happened.

"Throughout the investigation process, we will look into the man, the machine and the environment," Kemner said.

Mitchell's family said she was one of a kind.

"She was a great person. University of Alabama graduate," cousin Trevor Berry said.

Her family said she loved her three children and was engaged to be married in March.

"She will be missed by her family," David Mitchell Jr. said.

The NTSB said it should have a preliminary report on what happened in about 10 days.

Mitchell's family said she had been traveling in the plane on corporate business.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.wsbtv.com

A day after a small private plane came down in northwest Atlanta, investigators were back at the scene, combing through wreckage. Initial findings into the crash that killed all four aboard a Cessna 560 are expected in 10 days, but a complete report could take 18 months.

“We will look into the man, the machine and the environment,” National Transportation Safety Board investigator Heidi Kemner said during a Friday briefing.

The aircraft crashed about 12:10 p.m. Thursday in English Park, near I-285 at Bolton Road, shortly after taking off from nearby Fulton County Airport.

Victims included Wei Chen, founder and CEO of Memphis-based Sunshine Enterprise, and accountant Danielle Mitchell. A 32-year-old mother of three, she was to be married in March. She lived in Memphis but had relatives in Atlanta, two of whom came to Friday’s briefing.

“She was a brilliant, smart person,” said her uncle, David Mitchell Jr. “She loved her kids and will be missed by her family.”

Officials hadn’t identified the two other victims as of Friday evening.

Kemner would not discuss details about the investigation or about the victims, only saying the flight was headed to Millington, Tenn., just north of Memphis. She said the plane would be taken to another site to be reassembled.

Chen, survived by his wife and three children, was an avid flier who became the first Chinese citizen to fly a single-engine airplane around the world. News of his death sent shockwaves through Memphis’ business community, where Chen had been a fixture for decades.

“He came over with nothing in his pocket,” his longtime friend and former publicist Tricia Montgomery told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Chen came to Memphis in the late 1990s, from Changsha City, in China’s Hunan Province, where he was born in 1971. He’d come to Tennessee to attend the University of Memphis where he graduated with a business degree in 1998.

“When I came to Memphis, I didn’t speak much English, I didn’t have any money and I didn’t know anyone,” Chen told The Commercial Appeal in 2011. “In the first week, I met my best friend and my future wife-to-be. Then I started my business. Memphis can offer opportunity, if you work hard.”

His business focused on the distribution and wholesale of Chinese manufactured construction equipment. Chen’s rise landed him on Memphis Business Journal’s Top 40 under 40 in 2008. For the last several years he was a board member of “Memphis in May,” the city’s annual celebration promoting tourism and international trade.

“He worked so hard, he worked his way up and was just a blessing to everybody,” said Leigh Shockey, CEO of Drexel Chemical in Memphis. “He has been really instrumental in bringing awareness to the community about international trade.”

Flying was his passion, and his fascination with planes propelled him to pursue a pilot’s license in 2007. With just 250 hours of flying time under his belt, Chen announced he wanted to fly a single-engine plane around the world.

Montgomery was his publicist for the 69-day journey in 2011 and recalled Chen’s joy at landing at the airport to throngs of well-wishers and dignitaries. His trip was documented by Chinese state television.

“And the thing is, he did (the trip) to raise money for St. Jude’s Children’s Research,” Montgomery said.

Chen later wrote a book about the experience. Its title: “Around the World in 69 Days: What Would You Attempt To Do If You Knew You Could Not Fail?”

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.ajc.com


D Naumann said...

eerily reminiscent of the Citation crash in Cleveland about a year ago where as in this crash you have a single pilot, high performance aircraft, instrument conditions and an immediate turn after lift of more than 90 degrees. All things that demand a pilot be on top of his game.

Anonymous said...

First, I agree. However, don’t jump to quick on this one. I know several pilots that know him personally and have flown with him. He had his ATP and flew like a pro. Can’t argue that a crew is always ‘safer’, but things happen that even a crew can’t handle. Let’s see what comes from the flight instrument and voice recorders and investigation.

Anonymous said...

The level of pilot experience in these two circumstances are very different. The BKL crash had a relatively inexperienced pilot with very low time in type. He more than likely had a high reliance on the auto pilot and when he failed to get it engaged after departure lost control of the aircraft. Way to early to guess what happened in this accident.

Anonymous said...

A single pilot exemption 8988 was completed at FS in Nov of 2018. A very short time before the incident. I have significant time in the 550/560 series and can tell you that the airplane can sneak up on you in a single pilot operation. Also it’s quiet possible that having flown in to FTY in a different make of airplane then hoping in the cockpit of another make and model can be confusing especially punching into IMC quickly with a quick turn. The ADS-B data shows a 5000 plus fpm descent in a turn as well. Very shortly after ATC issued a second instruction of a turn to 310 after takeoff. ATC issued the turn on the initial clearance and expected it. Tower also issued the instruction to turn to 310 just before instructing the pilot to contact ATL departure. A quick unintelligible radio trans was made not sure if it was the pilot or ATC. No mayday call was on tower or 121.0 ATL center of the recordings that I pulled on ATC.net. Prayers to the families of all involved.

Anonymous said...

Possible drone strike?

Anonymous said...

It's going to be interesting to see the outcome of this investigation and the *Cessna 525A CJ2 that crashed in a similar manner November 30, 2018 in Indiana. Man, machine or environment?

* http://www.kathrynsreport.com/2018/11/cessna-525-citationjet-n525eg-fatal.html

Anonymous said...

I doubt that someone was flying a "drone" in IMC conditions.

Anonymous said...

The BKL crash had a relatively inexperienced pilot with very low time in type. He more than likely had a high reliance on the auto pilot and when he failed to get it engaged after departure lost control of the aircraft. J.F.K. Seemed to be somewhat like this pilot under a curtain of darkness,,,

Anonymous said...

"Possible drone strike?"

My guess is the chance of that is only slightly greater than a stray asteroid ... Probably going to be a much more complex cause. Let the NTSB do their job.

RIP to all on board.

Tom Ibach said...

what did this plane have for an attitude indicator?