Thursday, February 17, 2022

Beechcraft 58 Baron, N58LF: Fatal accident occurred February 16, 2022 near Davidson County Airport (KEXX), Lexington, North Carolina

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.

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

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Greensboro, North Carolina
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas

Location: Lexington, North Carolina 
Accident Number: ERA22FA126
Date and Time: February 16, 2022, 17:07 Local
Registration: N58LF
Aircraft: Beech 58 
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

On February 16, 2022, about 1707 eastern standard time, a Beech 58 airplane, N58LF, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Lexington, North Carolina. The private pilot was fatally injured, and the driver of the tractor-trailer and a passenger of that truck sustained minor injuries. The airplane was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight.

Three witnesses who were on the airport ramp observed a portion of the takeoff roll, rotation, and initial climb before losing sight of the airplane just before impact. One of the witnesses, who flew for a major airline, reported that the right engine was spewing dense white smoke that the airport video did not accurately depict. Airport security video captured white smoke trailing the airplane about the time the airplane rotated and continued until the airplane went out of sight of the camera, about 1/2 way down the runway. The witnesses noted the airplane level off or decrease the nose-up pitch attitude, with one reporting hearing engine gyrations which he either associated with one engine failing or the engines being out of sync. A photograph taken by one of the witnesses when the airplane was seen near the intersection of taxiway A1 depicted the airplane in a climb attitude with the landing gear extended and smoke trailing the right engine. As the flight continued, the landing gear retracted, the right engine quit, and the propeller stopped. The airplane pitch attitude decreased and then increased. About the time that the landing gear retracted, one of the witnesses noted white/blue colored smoke trailing the left engine and the airplane was described as not having power, while another witness described the smoke trailing the left engine as white. The airplane banked to the left, stalled, pitched nose down, and disappeared behind terrain.

A witness, who was located about 1/4 mile north of the accident site, observed the airplane departing, and an “…engine wasn’t turning.” He observed the airplane descend, followed by a loud sound, then saw smoke.

Video taken from a truck that was travelling in the middle lane of the three-lane highway behind the impacted truck depicted the airplane in a very slight nose-up attitude immediately before impact. The video did not depict the collision with the truck but did depict the resulting fireball and heavy black smoke. It also depicted the tractor-trailer rolling onto its side, and vehicles in very close proximity to the fireball stopping or maneuvering to avoid the fireball.

The driver of the impacted truck reported he was travelling at 65 mph, and he felt the trailer contacted by something. The truck turned over and he and the passenger climbed out of the cab on the passenger side.

The wreckage was recovered for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Beech 
Registration: N58LF
Model/Series: 58
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built:
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: VMC 
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: EXX, 733 ft msl 
Observation Time: 17:15 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 16°C /7°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 4400 ft AGL 
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 5 knots / , 170°
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 7500 ft AGL
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.43 inches Hg 
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Departure Point: 
Lexington, NC Destination:

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal 
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 
Aircraft Fire: On-ground
Ground Injuries: 2 Minor 
Aircraft Explosion: On-ground
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 35.773983,-80.315802

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation may contact them by email, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email You can also call the NTSB Response Operations Center at 844-373-9922 or 202-314-6290. 

Raymond John Ackley
February 21, 1978 - February 16, 2022

Mr. Ackley, 43, passed away on February 16, 2022.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, March 4, 2022 at 11am at St. Matthew Catholic Church with Father John Allen Celebrant. The family will receive friends prior to the Mass 10-10:45am, Eulogy to begin at 10:45am. His graveside ceremony will be held on Monday, March 7, 2022 at 11am at Salisbury National Cemetery with full military honors.

Ray was born on February 21, 1978 in Detroit, Michigan.

Ray was a man of intense compassion, patience, and great generosity. He was a strong and respected leader but also a humble person, and a gentle and caring father, son, brother, and husband.

Ray honorably served his country as a leader in the Army National Guard from 2005 to 2014. He rose to the rank of Captain, completing tours in Kuwait and Afghanistan. He earned eight medals and ribbons including the Meritorious Service Award for his selfless service, including as Company Commander of the 196th Signal Company, 113th Battalion. Raymond left the National Guard for the Army Reserve in 2014 to be more present for his family and continued to serve as a Reservist.

Ray also had a successful civilian career as a Computer Engineer, working for Microsoft for over 13 years and previously for Ford Motor Company. He was known professionally as extremely smart, but more importantly as genuine, patient, and kind with his colleagues. He was a creative entrepreneur who graced the world with multiple inventions including a vegetable oil fuel switching device and an air conditioning system for small aircraft, both of which he turned into successful businesses.

Ray was passionate about flying and loved the feeling of freedom he experienced in the air. He shared that passion with his family, flying his sons on adventures to the Bahamas and taking Adam to an epic University of Michigan Football game just months before he passed away. Ray was generous with his many talents and passions; he modeled his generosity by bringing his son along on volunteer Angel Flights to provide free transportation to people in need.

Ray was fun-loving, adventurous, and had a voracious sweet tooth, which his sons have all inherited.

Ray passed away doing what he loved. We pray that he will rest easy in heaven along with his Busia, Armstrong, Paddy, Grandpa Ackley, Aunt Kathy, and Uncle Richard.

He is survived by his wife Ching; children Adam age 11, Benjamin age 6 and Thomas age 5 months; parents Raymond H. and Joanna (Jankowski) Ackley; sisters, Mary Ackley and Angela (Ackley) Nepa and her husband Dominic; niece, Lilyana and nephews, Zac and Matthew.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Angel Flight Soars (, 2000 Airport Road Suite 227 Dekalb Peachtree Airport Atlanta, GA 30341.