4 Dead as Plane Smashes Into NextEra Wind Turbine in S. Dakota

Quixotes Last Stand

Dirk Lammers — SfGate — April 28, 2014

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — A small airplane heading back to South Dakota after a Texas cattle sale crashed into a wind farm in foggy weather, killing the pilot and three passengers.

Elizabeth Cory, a spokeswoman for the Federal Aviation Administration, said the Piper 32 was traveling from Hereford, Texas, to Gettysburg, South Dakota. The single-engine plane was registered to Donald J. “D.J.” Fischer of Gettysburg, according to the FAA.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating, but authorities have not released any details on the crash.

Authorities have not released the names of the victims, but Luce Funeral Home confirmed that Fischer, the 30-year-old pilot, died. Lien Funeral Home confirmed the deaths of cattlemen Brent Beitelspacher, of Bowdle, and Logan Rau, of Java.

The funeral home handling arrangements for the fourth victim said it could not release any information.

The three…

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