SYLVA, N.C. (WSPA) — One person was killed in a plane crash Friday in Jackson County.
Search teams found the wreckage of the plane at about 12:45 p.m. in a rugged area of southern Jackson County, south of Whiteside Mountain.
Gary Huttleston was piloting the single-engine plane, officials said. Huttleston’s family arrived on the scene just before 3:30 p.m.
Earlier, crews were searching the western North Carolina mountains for the missing plane.
Macon County Emergency Management said in a news release that crews from Macon and Jackson counties were trying to locate the overdue plane. Its last known location was the Whiteside Mountain area around 6:15 p.m. Thursday.
The single-engine plane was headed to Aiken, South Carolina from Knoxville, Tennessee but failed to reach its destination, according to Macon County Emergency Management.
Teams started searching around 1 a.m. Friday but had to call off the search until daylight. Searchers were limited by the remote, rugged terrain and weather conditions.
Glenville-Cashiers Rescue Squad said in a news release that local, state, and federal agencies were assisting in the full-scale search operation.
Nat Turner, public information officer with the rescue squad, said crews were searching southwest of Cashiers.
Jackson County dispatch was notified around 6:30 p.m. Thursday by the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center (AFRCC) “that a plane was in distress in southern Jackson County. Further information from the AFRCC and the FAA indicated that the plane was last seen on radar at 6:14 pm EST and that the plane was a single engine private aircraft,” according to a release issued by the rescue squad.
Crews will continue to investigate the cause of the crash.