Sunday, April 14, 2019

Rockwell Sabreliner 65, registered to Classic Aviation Inc and operated as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight, N265DS: Fatal accident occurred April 13, 2019 in New Albany, Union County, Mississippi

The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Jackson, Mississippi

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: New Albany, MS
Accident Number: CEN19FA119
Date & Time: 04/13/2019, 1514 CDT
Registration: N265DS
Aircraft: Sabreliner NA265
Injuries: 3 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under:  Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

On April 13, 2019 about 1514 CDT, a Rockwell International NA-265-65 airplane, N265DS, impacted terrain near New Albany, Mississippi, following a reported electrical malfunction. The two commercial pilots and one passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was destroyed. The airplane was registered to Classic Aviation Inc. and operated as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Instrument meteorological conditions were reported at the accident site and along the route of flight about the time of the accident, and the flight was operated on an instrument flight rules flight plan. The flight originated from University-Oxford Airport (UOX), Mississippi, at 1506 and was destined for Marion County-Rankin Fite Airport (HAB), Georgia.

According to recordings of ATC communications, at 1501 the flight requested a clearance from ATC to depart UOX and proceed to HAB. ATC provided a clearance. The next communication occurred at 1506 when the flight reported climbing through 1,300 ft. ATC notified the flight of moderate to severe precipitation in the area of UOX and provided a clearance to 11k ft MSL. At 1508 ATC queried the flight for their altitude and informed the flight of moderate to heavy precipitation along their route of flight. The flight acknowledged the radio call and informed ATC they were climbing through 9k ft for 11k ft. About 1512 ATC queried the flight if they were having navigation issues or if they were deviating. The flight responded they were deviating and that they were having "AC voltage problems." The last radio call received from the flight was an acknowledgement of a heading assignment to 095° at 1513. The airplane disappeared from radar about 30 seconds later and the ATC controller tried unsuccessfully to raise the flight on the radio at that time.

Preliminary radar data began tracking the airplane at 1506. The airplane transponder stopped transmitting Mode 3A information about 1508, so no altitude information was available for the remainder of the flight. The airplane maintained an approximate heading of 080° from 1506 until about 1510. At 1510 the airplane turned right to about 120° heading. At 1512 the airplane made a left turn to about 040° heading. At 1513 the airplane began a right turn that continued to a heading of about 270° until radar contact was lost at 1513:26. The final radar return was about .5 miles southeast of the accident location.

The airplane impacted terrain in a wooded and rural area on a 005° heading. Broken trees indicated the airplane attitude at impact was about 50° right bank and 20° nose low. The wreckage was highly fragmented and spread over an area about 800 ft wide and 1,500 ft long. A cockpit voice recorder was recovered and sent to the NTSB recorder's laboratory for examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Sabreliner
Registration: N265DS
Model/Series: NA265 65
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Classic Aviation Inc
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation:
Observation Time:
Distance from Accident Site:
Temperature/Dew Point:
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: / ,
Lowest Ceiling:
Altimeter Setting:
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Departure Point: Oxford, MS (KUOX)
Destination: Hamilton, AL (khab)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: Unknown
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: Unknown
Total Injuries: 3 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 34.382500, -88.956111

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

Jarrod Lee Holloway
November 17th, 1970 ~ April 13th, 2019 (AGE 48)

Jarrod Lee Holloway (48) passed away Saturday April 13, 2019 as the result of a plane crash. He was born in Aurora, Illinois, on November 17, 1970, to Nell and Earl Holloway. He grew up in McKinney, Texas. He graduated from Freed-Hardeman University. Jarrod was a deacon at the Booneville Church of Christ, where he was actively involved with his church family, especially the youth. He went on missionary trips to Honduras; Guyana, South America; and Nicaragua. Early on, he worked construction for his father's company, where he even worked on Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. 

Jarrod was a self-employed business owner and a pilot. 

On September 1, 1995, Jarrod married Sonya Green Holloway, and their life became one big adventure since he loved to fly and travel. Jarrod was a jack of all trades: scuba diver, pilot, carpenter, electrician, Boy Scout leader, mechanic, machinist, ham radio operator, life guard, marksman and much more. He loved the outdoors and camping, mud riding and swimming his pond with his children and their friends, but his most favorite things to do were reading and eating. Jarrod loved his family and family get-togethers. He was a people person. 

Jarrod's favorite saying was "Things don't matter; people do." He spent much of his life with people, especially his lunch buddies, who shared his love for food and fellowship. 

Memorial services will be 4 pm Tuesday April 16, 2019, at Booneville Church of Christ with Ministers Greg Pollock and Jim Estes officiating. Visitation will be 1 pm until service time at 4 pm at the church. 

Jarrod is survived by his wife of 24 years, Sonya, his daughter, Sandra and son, Lewis of the home; his father, Earl Holloway; three brothers, Stuart Holloway (Marilyn), David Holloway (Kathy) and Kent Holloway, all of McKinney, TX; his sister-in-laws, Melanie Swinney (Todd) of Wheeler and Lawanna Cobb (Tory) of Booneville; his nieces and nephews, Steven, Emily and Michael Holloway; Carter, Cole and Levi Swinney; and Jackson and Brady Cobb. He is preceded in death by his mother, Nell Holloway.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be given to the Lewis and Sandra Holloway Education Fund to support his children's college educations. An account has been set up at the First American National Bank. Condolences to the family may be made online at

Merline and Tommy Nix

Tommy Nix age 70 and Merline Nix age 69 of Guin, AL passed away April 13, 2019 in Union County, Mississippi.

Tommy was born February 10, 1949 in Winfield, AL and is the son of the late Fritz Hue and Mary Etma McDonald Nix. Merline was born November 4, 1949 in Elaine, AR and is the daughter of Mary Catherine Rogers Roberts Cochran and the late Arnold Henry Eugene Roberts.

They had lived in the Guin area most of their life, and they were a member of the Piney Grove Free Will Baptist Church. Tommy was a truck mechanic and pilot.

They are survived by 2 Sons, T.J. (Sissy) Nix of Guin, AL and Terry (Dusty) Nix of Golden, MS, 4 Grandchildren, Coty (Brandy) Nix, Niki (Judd) Hubbert, Drew Nix and Blake Nix, 2 Great Grandchildren, Reily Nix and Lily Hubbert, Tommy’s Sister, Judith Capps of Tuscaloosa, AL, Merline’s Mother, Cathy Roberts Cochran of Guin, AL and Sister, Janie (Roger) Ray of Gu-Win, AL.

Memorial Services held Wednesday, April 17, 2019 at 4:00 pm from the Piney Grove Free Will Baptist Church. A private burial will be held later.  In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Piney Grove Free Will Baptist Church, PO Box 4, Guin, AL 35563.

Tommy Nix

NEW ALBANY, Mississippi • In Northeast Mississippi and Northwest Alabama, families and friends are making plans to celebrate the lives of three people lost in a Saturday afternoon plane crash in Union County.

A memorial service for co-pilot Jarrod Holloway is planned for Tuesday at Booneville Church of Christ. The memorial service for pilot Tommy Nix and wife Merline Nix is set for Wednesday at Piney Grove Freewill Baptist Church outside of Guin, Alabama.

“They’re just good people,” said David Deaton, a Nix family friend who learned to fly from Tommy Nix 20 years ago.

Tommy Nix, 70, was well respected as a pilot and an airplane mechanic, Deaton said. Merline Nix, 69, was gracious and kind.

“When I bought my plane, I wouldn’t fly it until Tommy went through it and taught me how to fly it,” said David Deaton, who now serves as the president of the Tishomingo County Airport Commission. “Both Tommy and Merline were very special to me.”

The Nix family has roots in Belmont. Tommy Nix served as Tishomingo County Airport manager for years, and his son Terry Nix currently serves as the airport manager. In recent years, the Nixes had operated their aviation service from Marion County-Rankin Fite Airport in Hamilton, Alabama.

Visitation for Tommy and Merline Nix is set for 1 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, immediately followed by a memorial service at Piney Grove Freewill Baptist Church in Beaverton, Alabama. The family is asking for donations for the church in lieu of flowers.

A memorial service for co-pilot Jarrod Holloway will be held at Booneville Church of Christ at 4 p.m Tuesday. Holloway’s family is focusing on celebrating Holloway’s life and has asked friends to share their favorite stories about him. Visitation will be from 1 to 4 p.m. at the church.

Crash investigation

Tommy Nix and Holloway flew the Rockwell Sabreliner 65 aircraft, a mid-size business jet, from Colorado to Oxford on Saturday carrying high-profile former lawyer Dickie Scruggs and his family. Scruggs told the Clarion Ledger he and his family had flown frequently with Holloway and that both pilots were extremely professional.

The Nixes and Holloway had left Oxford en route to Hamilton when the crash occurred between 4:30 and 5 p.m. Saturday.

On Monday, NTSB and FAA investigators were at the crash site near the New Harmony community in southeastern Union County, said Curt Clayton, Union County emergency management director.

Coroner Pam Bowman said remains have been recovered from the crash site.

The debris is spread out over about ¼ of a mile, Clayton said. The FAA investigation was largely complete at the end of the day Monday. The NTSB will continue its work. Debris clean up is expected to begin this afternoon or Wednesday.

Original article can be found here ➤

Three people died Saturday night after their plane crashed near Oxford.

Former trial lawyer Dickie Scruggs had been on the plane hours before crash, flying from a conference in Colorado to Mississippi.

Scruggs said he and his family got off the plane in Oxford. 

Tommy Nix and wife Merline Nix of Belmont, Mississippi, and co-pilot Jarrod Holloway of Booneville, Mississippi, continued on to Alabama's Marion County-Rankin Fite Airport, officials say.

They didn't make it.

The plane crashed in a wooded area between New Albany and Blue Springs, according to a federal official.

Scruggs said he learned about the crash when he got a text from an unknown number: "If this is Dickie Scruggs, please call me immediately."

Scruggs, a nationally known trial attorney who did a stint in federal prison, called the number.

The man on the other end was a pilot who lived nearby, Scruggs said. The plane lost communication east of Oxford, he told Scruggs, and he was trying to figure out what happened.

The pilot thought Scruggs was on the plane when it went silent.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Rick Breitenfeldt told The Associated Press that the twin-engine jet crashed about 10:30 p.m. Saturday.

Severe storms were sweeping through Mississippi at the time, but Breitenfeldt said it was not immediately clear if weather was a factor in the crash.

On Sunday morning, Scruggs visited the crash site with his son.

Local and federal authorities were at the scene, he said, and debris was scattered across a quarter to a half of a mile.

They were still searching for major parts of the plane, Scruggs said.

Scruggs knew the pilot, Tommy Nix, well.

He said they flew together nearly every week. Scruggs estimated he's been on 50 to 100 flights with Nix — possibly more.

Nix and the co-pilot Holloway were professional pilots, Scruggs said, noting that he'd flown with Holloway probably a dozen times.

“Tommy (Nix) had taught (Holloway) how to fly when he was a young man," Scruggs said.

Scruggs described them as "friendly, intelligent and professional."

"They were really exceptional in their professionalism," he said.

Scruggs also got to know the wife of Tommy Nix, Merline. He said the couple had been married for more than 50 years and had two sons.

He described Merline as "just a fine, elegant lady."

Scruggs said he was scheduled to fly with Tommy Nix Wednesday to Pascagoula for a speech.

Scruggs said he has had some close calls flying planes as a young Navy pilot. Decades ago, he lost his best friend in a plane crash.

Scruggs said they were about to leave the Navy and go back to college when the fatal crash occurred.

"It's the same kind of feeling," Scruggs said of Saturday's crash. "You feel helpless. It's a sobering feeling. You're reminded of your own mortality."

Scruggs emphasized that authorities have to conduct a thorough investigation to determine what caused the crash, but he doubts it was pilot error.

"I trust him with my family and have many times," Scruggs said of Nix. “...Everybody's scratching their head because it looks like the plane might have come apart in the air."

The crash has left Scruggs wondering what if he were on the airplane for just a bit longer.

For now, though, Scruggs said he will pray and see what he can do for the families of the deceased. 

Original article can be found here ➤

Pascagoula, Mississippi, attorney Richard "Dickie" Scruggs and his private jet are shown in this file photo.

UNION COUNTY, Mississippi (WLBT) - Three people have died after a small commercial plane crashed in north Mississippi.

Union County Sheriff Jimmy Edwards says the victims are pilot Tommy Nix along with his wife Merline Nix of Belmount, and co-pilot Jarrod Holloway of Booneville.

On Sunday, Governor Phil Bryant confirmed the deaths during a press conference with MEMA on Saturday’s severe weather event.

The plane went down around 5 p.m. it was found near County Roads 120 and 121.

A search was underway for the plane after Air Traffic Control Center in Memphis called the county to say that it was missing.

It’s unknown why the plane crashed. Governor Bryant says that they do not believe that the severe weather played any part.

EMA Director Curt Clayton said the Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the crash.

He also said the National Transportation Safety Board will be on scene Monday.

Original article can be found here ➤

A North American Sabreliner en route to Hamilton, Alabama from Oxford was met with disaster on Saturday.

Union County sheriff Jimmy Edwards confirmed there were no survivors in the crash.

The 10-passenger plane, carrying aboard pilot Tommy Nix and his wife Merline Nix of Belmont and co-pilot Jarrod Holloway of Booneville, was discovered during late-night storms.

“We received a call from the control tower in Memphis that had seen it go off the radar,” Edwards said.

According to Union County EMA director Curt Clayton, trouble started on the flight almost immediately after takeoff.

“From what we’ve gathered in our investigation while trying to locate the aircraft, 10 or 15 minutes after this aircraft took off, they were supposed to fly into the 10,000-foot range. Air traffic control noticed they climbed to 11,000-feet so they radioed the aircraft and made contact,” Clayton said.

Nix cited electrical difficulties in the cabin that they were trying to correct when the plane left Memphis’ radar. Moments later, air traffic control lost radio contact.

“(Memphis) gave us GPS coordinates of their last known location and we did some plotting on some maps. We had three spots we identified where the plane could have gone down, two in our county and one in Pontotoc County,” Clayton said.

The plane crashed in a wooded area off County Road 120 in the southeast region of Union County, near the Pontotoc County line somewhere between 4:30 and 5 p.m.

But area storms made locating the crash site all the more difficult.

“The storms got us pretty good but the rain actually helped us locate the plane,” Clayton said. “It washed the fuel out of the wooded area into a ditch where we were able to smell it.”

Sheriff Edwards noted that the Federal Aviation Administration were onsite as of Sunday afternoon and the National Transportation Safety Board will be joining the investigation.

“They’re going to come in and lead the investigation into what caused the aircraft to come down,” Edwards said.

Original article can be found here ➤


  1. Haven't seen an operating Sabreliner in years.


  2. Listening to atc recording they were clearing having issues with heading and altitude, no xtrpdr read out, finally he told atc they had a AC electrical issue, so there goes the adi indicators, which are ac so inverter failure or such. Seeing a pic online of the panel I do not see any peanut stby instruments, also searching pilots name several part 134 1/2 issues come up, sounds like maybe a sketchy operation maybe, and old junk, probably pooorly maintained.

  3. All part 25 aircraft have a standby gyro, compass, and airspeed. The standby battery if properly maintained is required to supply a minimum of 30 minutes of power to the gyro and a few lights. The 65 is a great plane but good maintenance is a must.

  4. Yeah ik that but I don’t c it in this photo online when it was for sale, has a garmin stack in center and no b/u stby horizon, only c stby altimeter.

  5. In 2000 Nix's commercial pilot certificate was suspended 120 days for violations of FAR Parts 119 and 135. In 2007 Nix successfully appealed another attempt by the FAA to suspend his license, again for Part 119 and 135 violations.

  6. Look at just about any other pic of a Sabreliner (doesn't even matter what model), and you'll see a standby ADI over the center stack, or in the pilot's panel right where this plane had a standby altimeter, which is not a normal thing to see in a Sabreliner cockpit....odd!

  7. Unfortunately I have flown with these type of pilots. What I learned quickly is that they have good airmanship skills yet they don't have very attentive crew resource management skills. Typically the right seat guy manages the radios and navigation maybe pulls the gear. This type of operation operate aircraft that are 30 to 40 years on the airframe let alone the frayed and brittle wiring throughout the airplane. It was evident that they teeter on the edge of safety and maintenance. From what I was told they refer to this pilot as the junkyard dog. RIP to all involved.


  8. Could have been an instrument failure. Many pilots are very slow to detect an instrument failure and cannot fly partial panel, most end up crashing. (per Flight Safety sim instructor)

  9. The standby horizon is above the fuel qty gauge, you can't see it in the panel picture online. The AC electrical system has a lot of redundancies. Sounds like they may have flown into a thunderstorm and gotten hit by lighting which could have caused a loss of AC power but not likely, there are 3 inverters that can run pilot side instruments, also in the event that there is complete AC failure there is a Standby attitude indicator with its own battery. It sounds more like they may have had pitot ice. or taken a large amount of water into the Pitot system, which feeds information to the air data computers. This would cause a lot of instrument issues that they may have misunderstood as an AC power failure. Not sure how much Sabre experience the crew had, but I have been flying Sabres for over 30 years. One issue was the pilots decided to take off with major t-storms in the area.

  10. Well after reading the comment section it has become very clear to me that you people have got this unfortunate and tragic event already figured out so clearly there should be no need for further investigation. It saddens my heart to know that we live in a world that is so full of ass holes. I could not help but notice for the most part that you know it all *&^%$#%$@&$%# posted your stupid a%# comments under an Anonymous Identity??? That's just like them C>B ass whippings or Drive by shootings its cheep but most of all its sad. What i am about to ask is very simple even for you people. How many of you know Tommy Nix. ANY i didn't think so!! Well that may have been to hard for some of you so i will try again. How many of you have ever talked to Tommy Nix?? and yes on the phone would count as a yes? I would be willing to bet not a single one of you no it all ass holes had ever met the man? But never the less you all start making your Ludicrous and Outrageous statements about someone you did not know had never met or even talked with on the phone, but yet somehow felt it appropriate and necessary throw rocks at someone you did not even know. I only saw where one person had any condolences for the victims or families only one? the rest of you people were to busy being Anonymous than to come forward with any condolences or prayers for the families, least not we forget 3 people lost there lives in this tragic event. SHAME ON YOU ANONYMOUS, SHAME ON YOU!!!!!!!! LET ME TELL YOU PEOPLE THIS!! I had the pleasure of meeting Tommy Nix when i was 12 yrs old and today i am 57 yrs so i was fortunate enough to know Tommy for 45 yrs, AND i feel GOD BLESSED that for that DURATION I was also lucky enough to also call him FRIEND!!!!! SO i feel that i am much much more QUALIFIED to make any comments about Tommy Nix than someone called ANONYMOUS that had never met or new the man!! So with that being said i would very much like to make one NOW!!!! Tommy Nix was a blessing to his FAMILY, to his CHURCH , and also his COMMUNITY and FRIENDS!!!!! He was a man that i very much RESPECTED and LOOKED up to. TOMMY NIX was a man that would always put a SMILE on your face and leave you with a warm feeling from just talking with him. My name is MAX CANTRELL and i live in GUIN AL and there is no doubt in my mind he was also a man that had FORGOTTEN more about AIRPLANES than anybody named ANONYMOUS will ever know!! so all you people named ANONYMOUS i feel that you need to work on your people skills and learn there are times to talk and there are times to keep your mouths shut about people that you don't know and to make it easy for you this was one of those times!!!! I am just saying!!! TOMMY and MERLINE our hearts are saddened with you gone!!! you will very much be missed by FAMILY and FRIENDS so may you rest in peace and enjoy flying high in HEAVEN Because i am sure GOD just needed a PILOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. Kathryn's should have a disclaimer- It is not recommended that family members or loved ones of those involved in crashes read these posts. There may be critical and tactless commentary on those events and their loved ones which may prolong the grieving process and cause further emotional trauma to already injured individuals.