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Donald Cates killed in Ohio plane crash

2:23 PM, Apr 1, 2012   |    comments
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BELMONT, Ohio (KSDK) - A volunteer with Chesterfield-based Wings of Hope has been killed in a plane crash in eastern Ohio.

Trooper Ross Thompson with the Ohio State Highway says Donald J. Cates, 56, of Scott Air Force Base, was lone occupant of plane and was pronounced dead at the scene 

Trooper Thompson says the single-engine plane crashed on a lawn in a residential area east of Belmont at 6:44 p.m. Friday night.  The plane came to rest 19 feet from a house.  

The plane was a Zodiac experimental aircraft and was "amateur built," according to Thompson.

The plane had taken off from Mifflin County Airport in Reedsville, PA and was headed for Spirit of St. Louis Airport in Chesterfield.

The cause of the crash is under investigation by the FAA and the NTSB. 

Michele Rutledge, Vice President of Wing of Hope, says someone in Pennsylvania had donated the plane to the non-profit.  Cates had gone to pick it up and was flying back to Chesterfield when the crash happened.

Wings of Hope is dedicated to improving accessibility to health care in the United States and around the world. The non-profit was nominated for the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize for its humanitarian work.























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