Two die in plane crash near Hummel Field in Topping
A pilot and his passenger were killed after their plane crashed on Sunday just after takeoff from Hummel Field in Topping.
The pilot, Stephen L. Meyers, 58, of Christianburg, was killed when the plane hit the ground just across the road (Route 200) behind Eckhard’s Restaurant. Meyer’s passenger, Misty Dawn McIntyre, 48, of Newport was medevacked, but died later of injuries she sustained in the crash.
The small plane was a vintage 1968 Cessna 150 that had just refueled at the Middlesex County-owned airport.
Airport manager Jim Snider said Hummel has had “incidences” in the past but this was the first crash and first fatalities.
Eckhard’s was operating at the time of the crash and Snider said people there reported the crash. No witnesses were available for interview at press time.
NTSB spokesman Eric Weiss said their investigator is looking at radar data, weather, as well as GPS and other electronics, such as the pilot’s phone, to find clues as to what happened. Weiss said a report should be issued online at NTSB.gov within 7-10 days.
Hummel was established by flying pioneer Fred E. Hummel in 1925. His first flight was on a glider he built. He took off from a cliff overlooking Lake Michigan in June 1911, eight years before the Wright Brothers became airborne at Kitty Hawk, NC. The flight, which ended on a sandy beach below the cliff, earned him a niche in the Early Birds of Aviation
He donated the airport Middlesex County in 1970.