Update: Goochland Hall of Fame pilot killed in plane crash

Published: Jun. 28, 2014 at 3:22 AM EDT|Updated: Jul. 8, 2014 at 3:22 AM EDT
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HALIFAX, NC (WWBT) - A member of the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame, decorated Army veteran and accomplished lawyer died on Friday when his plane went down in North Carolina.

"As good a lawyer as Al was," said Randy Wimbish with the Sands Anderson law firm. "He was an even better person. He was a mentor to probably two generations of lawyers in this firm. I'm at Sands Anderson because of Al Orgain."

The Sands Anderson law firm confirmed Albert M. Orgain IV of Goochland was killed in Friday's crash. He was flying his Cessna 182 from the Sabot airport and was scheduled to stop in North Carolina before heading to the Hanover County Municipal Airport. However, he reported engine trouble in North Carolina and the plane was diverted to the Halifax-Northampton Regional Airport.

The plane crashed in a field five miles southwest of the airport around 10 a.m. Friday, according to the FAA.

"We were all incredibly shocked and saddened to learn of this," said Wimbish. "Al was doing what he loved. He would tell anyone...I work so I can fly."

Orgain had 50 years of flying experience, including as a rotorcraft pilot in the U.S. Army and flying Huey gunship helicopters in Vietnam. He was wounded twice by enemy fire and awarded two Purple Hearts and two awards of the Distinguished Flying Cross.

He graduated from the Virginia Military Institute in 1965 and received his law degree from Washington and Lee University in 1971. He was a charter member of the Virginia Aviation Foundation, chairman of the Virginia Aviation Historical Society Board and was inducted into the Virginia Aviation Hall of Fame.

He headed Sands Anderson's Aviation Team where he worked for more than 30 years.

"For many years when we were a smaller firm he was Captain Christmas at our office party. He would show up handing out gifts and awards," said Wimbish. "Al was a wonderful man, wonderful lawyer, wonderful pilot, and we are going to miss him terribly."

The FAA is investigating the cause of the crash.

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