The National Transportation Safety Board has released a preliminary report on a plane crash that killed six members of a prominent Kansas family earlier this month.
Preliminary radar data in the report indicates the pilot, Ron Bramlage, changed course to avoid bad weather and at that point, the plane began to rapidly lose altitude on Thursday June 7.
The Bramlage family had just left the Bahamas after vacation and were on their way back to Junction City, Kansas when Ron Bramlage made a mayday call at 25,000 feet and the plane made a sharp right before crashing, the report, issued Tuesday, said.
Ron Bramlage, his wife and his four children were all killed in the crash. Ron Bramlage's grandfather, Fred Bramlage, was the namesake for Bramlage Coliseum on the campus of Kansas State University.
According to the report, Ron Bramlage was advised of a large area of rain and was then advised to take to try to go around it. Once the pilot changed course, the plane began to rapidly descend.
Several witnesses reported seeing or hearing the plane crash.
The pilot of a nearby plane reported hearing the mayday call. Another witness who was close to the crash site reported that he was inside his house when he says he heard the plane breaking apart. He videotaped the plane's decent.
Another witness reported hearing a "boom sound" and saw black smoke trailing form the airplane which
was spinning. He then reported hearing a thud. He and his brother ran toward the wreckage. They saw fire in the front of the airplane. Both witnesses called 911 to report the accident.
It may take about a year before the final report is released.
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