[Editor’s note: We received an anonymous tip regarding this event. Thank you for your contribution.]
On May 25, 2019, about 0923 eastern daylight time, a Cessna TR182, N6123T, was destroyed when it impacted terrain during a visual approach to McKinnon St Simons Island Airport (SSI), St Simons Island, Georgia. The commercial pilot was fatally injured. The personal flight was operated under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and an instrument flight rules flight was filed for the flight that originated from Savannah/Hilton Head Island Airport (SAV), Savannah, Georgia, about 0859.
The wreckage came to rest nose down in an approximate 3-ft crater, oriented about a heading of 210° magnetic and most of it was consumed by postcrash fire. No debris path was observed, with the exception of two tree strikes immediately above the wreckage. The engine and forward fuselage remained in the crater.
According to Col Andrea Van Buren, Georgia Wing Commander, Captain Roger H. Crane joined the Civil Air Patrol in March 2007 and is a well-known, highly regarded mission pilot and certified flight instructor. Capt Crane holds an extensive number of CAP qualifications, including mission pilot, transport mission pilot, mission check pilot, instructor pilot, orientation pilot and instrument pilot. He is also a Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) and Certified Flight Instructor – Instrument (CFI-I). He also has served as Logistics Officer, Operations Officer, and Standardization/Evaluation Officer for Savannah Composite Squadron.
Crane, age 80, held a commercial pilot certificate, with ratings for airplane single-engine land, airplane multiengine land, and instrument airplane. He also held a flight instructor certificate, with a rating for airplane single-engine and instrument airplane. His most recent FAA second-class medical certificate was issued on March 1, 2017. At that time, the pilot reported a total flight experience of 4,600 hours. The pilot also had a Basic Medical date of February 27, 2018.