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Pilot Killed in CA Plane Crash was Doctor Leaving to Provide Medical Care to Mexican Village

By Kelly Balamuth on August 27, 2012

According to a MercuryNews.com report, a Northern California airport accident claimed the life of a 66-year-old pilot who was an emergency room doctor on a charitable mission for Los Medicos Voladores, which is Spanish for “The Flying Doctors.” The physician, a resident of Yreka, recently joined the volunteer group and was headed to Bahia Tortugas in Baja California, Mexico with friends to provide medical and dental care to hundreds of people in the Mexican village. The trio was planning to join three other airborne teams who were going to do the same.

The news report states that the 66-year-old had told his two passengers to get off of the plane so he could test the airworthiness of the single-engine Piper Comanche. The pilot was concerned that there wasn’t sufficient lift. On his second takeoff attempt by himself, he hit a hangar at the Truckee-Tahoe Airport in Truckee just after takeoff and, according to officials with the Nevada County coroner’s office, the doctor tragically died on impact. Officials with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) are investigating the fatal plane crash.

An avid airplane enthusiast who has been flying planes since his youth, the 66-year-old was the medical director at Fairchild Medical Center in Yreka and was an emergency room doctor as well. The spokesman for Los Medicos Voladores states that the organization shares the devastation over the tragic accident with the man’s family and friends, adding that because of his “selfless concern” for his friends’ safety, the other two passengers are alive.

At Balamuth Law, our wrongful death lawyers in northern California recognize how devastating the sudden loss of a loved one can be and know the unexpected obstacles you and your family may face in the days ahead. If you feel the death of your loved may have been preventable, our compassionate and experienced legal team can conduct a thorough investigation to determine if any parties were at-fault for the death to obtain any necessary compensation. No amount of compensation can ease the pain of losing a loved one, but it can help with the unexpected costs that may arise following the accident.

For legal assistance during this difficult time, please call (888) 254-1234.

Attorney Kelly Balamuth was profiled in the
September 2013 Issue of Plaintiff Magazine.

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