Authorities in Colorado have confirmed that five people were found in the wreckage of a single-engine plane that crashed into a southwestern Colorado reservoir on Monday.
They say the wreckage will have to be brought to shore before those bodies can be removed – the plane is reportedly upside down and more than sixty feet underwater.
Salvage crews are expected to begin raising the wreckage on Wednesday (March 26th).
Authorities have yet to release the names of the victims; however it’s believed that the occupants of the aircraft were all from Etowah County, Alabama.
The plane reportedly took off from Gadsden on Saturday and was headed to Montrose – about 25 miles north of the crash site.
According to the website al.com a spokesman for the National Transportation Board has said that the pilot of the plane reported being in a “spin” before losing communication; witnesses who saw the crash said that the engine appeared to be “cutting out” with the plane going into a spin before it hit the water.
Social media posts and tributes have identified those victims as pilot Jimmy Hill and passengers Katrina Barksdale; her two sons, Kobe and Xander; and a cousin, Seth McDuffie.
Hill was well-known in the Gadsden area as owner of the Airport Café in Rainbow City. He was also named by the Darden Rehabilitation Center last year (2013) as “Professional of the Year” – for his work in employing and assisting the disabled.