The two people killed in a Tuesday evening plane crash in Litchfield have been identified.
Jumaane Omar Stanley Melville, a 37-year-old student pilot from St. Petersburg, Florida, was flying the Beech C-99 with instructor pilot James M. Shepard-Kegl, 69, of North Yarmouth about 5:44 p.m. when they crashed near Oak Hill Road, according to Lt. J. Chris Reed of the Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office.
The small twin-propeller plane had taken off from Auburn-Lewiston Airport just 30 minutes before it crashed while heading in the direction of O’Connell’s Field. It was on a training flight, according to the National Transportation Safety Board.
The plane was owned by Wiggins Airways out of Manchester, New Hampshire, Reed said Thursday.
Witnesses and residents living near the crash site reported a loud explosion Tuesday evening.
Some trees in the area near the crash site appeared to have their tops cut off and the impact site was less than 100 yards away. The wreckage site is approximately 200 yards long and 50 feet wide, Reed said.
There was no evidence of a fire on the plane before or after the crash, the board said Wednesday.
Investigators from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration responded to the scene and requested it be secured until another investigator from the National Transportation Safety Board arrived from Georgia.
The investigation is ongoing, and the cleanup is expected to last until Friday.
Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly spelled James M. Shepard-Kegl’s last name.