LOUISA COUNTY, VA (WWBT) - Authorities released the identity of the pilot involved in the deadly plane crash in Louisa County. He has been identified as James Arvid Youngquist, 62, of the 1400 block of Waterfront Road in Reston, Va.
At 12:38 p.m. Thursday, Tony Barrett shot a 30 second video on his cell phone of 128 Jefferson Highway. That was four minutes after a state trooper was called to the fiery scene. The FAA and NTSB are investigating.
The flight originated in Manassas and was destined for Danville. In between, police say the pilot stopped at the Louisa County airport to refuel. But minutes after takeoff, the 1981 Cessna plummeted from the sky a quarter mile from Freeman Field.
"It was fluttering for a few seconds," said eye-witness Sara Burks.
Burks and Herman Mallory spotted the plane flying sideways on their drive home.
"It banked over that house there. You could just not see it behind the trees, and then all of a sudden the wind took it, and it fell and exploded into a big fireball," said Burks.
"It was sad. It was really sad because I knew the fire was at the front of the plane and it exploded. There wasn't no help for him," said Mallory.
While the pilot did not survive, the man who lived there did. He had just gone down to his basement just before the crash and escaped out a back door while his house burned to the ground.
"I just feel really bad for the gentleman in the plane. I can't imagine going down and thinking this is it," said Jacqueline Spicer who showed up at the scene after hearing an explosion.
The pilot's body was taken to the Medical Examiner's office in Richmond for examination.