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Fri, Mar 21, 2008

Pilot Lost In Accident Near NC Air Park

Witnesses Say SR22 Was In Pattern To Land

A North Carolina homebuilder was lost Thursday in a possible stall-spin accident near Weddington.

The Wilmington Star-News reports the Cirrus SR22 GTS, N615WM, piloted by Wesley Ward Manning Jr, 51, was in the pattern at Aero Plantation Airport (NC21) and on approach to land when the accident occurred at approximately 1615 EDT.

According to witness reports, the aircraft (file photo of type shown below) was flying several hundred feet above nearby homes when its left wing dropped sharply, possibly while turning base, and impacted wooded terrain in a nose-down attitude.

Others who witnessed the accident say the aircraft's engine sputtered before it crashed. Weather was reportedly clear at the time, with a northerly wind at about 10 knots, gusting to 20.

Manning, who was the sole person onboard, had taken off from Pilots Ridge Air Strip (03NC) about 150 miles southeast of NC21.

Those who knew Manning said he was an extremely safety-conscious aviator. "We’re just wondering how something like that could have happened to him," said Bill Sansone, who has a hangar at Pilots Ridge. "It’s just a sad day for us."

Investigators with the FAA and NTSB were due on scene Thursday. Cirrus also planned to send representatives to the scene, according to The Charlotte Observer.

Manning was CEO of Manning Companies, a Weddington-based residential and commercial building and development firm.

IDENTIFICATION
  Regis#: 615WM        Make/Model: SR22      Description: SR-22
  Date: 03/20/2008     Time: 2000

  Event Type: Accident   Highest Injury: Fatal     Mid Air: N    Missing: N
  Damage: Destroyed

LOCATION
  City: WAXHAW   State: NC   Country: US

DESCRIPTION
  AIRCRAFT CRASHED IN A WOODED AREA UNDER UNKNOWN CIRCUMSTANCES, WAXHAW, NC

INJURY DATA      Total Fatal:   1
                 # Crew:   1     Fat:   1     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:   
                 # Pass:   0     Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:   
                 # Grnd:         Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:   

WEATHER: EQY 202000Z AUTO 31011G20KT 10SM CLR 10/M06 A3007

OTHER DATA
  Activity: Pleasure      Phase: Unknown      Operation: OTHER


  FAA FSDO: CHARLOTTE, NC  (SO33)                 Entry date: 03/21/2008

FMI: www.faa.gov

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