DE KALB, Mo. – The Missouri State Highway Patrol confirmed on Saturday that a St. Joseph man died after an ultralight aircraft crashed in mid-afternoon at a Buchanan County cornfield.
The patrol later identified the victim as Randal K. Reynolds, 65. The agency's report says that Reynolds was the sole occupant of the plane. He was pronounced dead at the scene by Richard Shelton of the Buchanan County Coroner's Office, with the body taken to Meierhoffer Funeral Home.
Several agencies arrived at the scene of the accident in southern Buchanan County, in a corn field near Missouri Route JJ, approximately four miles south of San Jose and approximately five miles north of De Kalb.
The patrol, the Buchanan County Sheriff's Office and the Buchanan County firefighters provided the first units to work the scene.
The ultralight engine plane was completely destroyed, and the firefighters extinguished the remaining flames of the accident shortly after their arrival. A strong smell of smoke and burnt fuel floated in the air shortly after the incident.
The headquarters of the Troop H patrol in St. Joseph said that the Buchanan County Communications Center received a report around 2:59 p.m. of a small plane that had crashed in the agricultural field, just west of Route JJ.
The patrol and the sheriff's office continue to investigate the circumstance of the accident. The patrol added that the Federal Aviation Administration had not been summoned for the investigation, since the ship did not contain a formal registration number.
"I understand, I am not very clear about this, but I understand that the nature of the aircraft is its configuration, since it was a homemade ultralight aircraft that did not have a tail number, or something like that so they did not respond to the scene, "Sgt. Jacob Angle, Missouri State Highway Patrol said.