HINCKLEY, Ill. -- A twin-engine plane carrying members of a sky diving club crashed in a soybean field Monday near the rural community of Hinckley, killing 12 people, officials said.
'(The plane) was coming from the east going west, and just went down into the bean field and exploded,' DeKalb County Sheriff Roger Scott said.
The Beechcraft B-18 took off about 12:43 p.m. and went down in a soybean field about 1 mile north of Hinckley, a rural community 50 miles west of Chicago.
Scott said there apparently were no distress calls before the plane lost power and crashed into the field shortly after takeoff.
'We noticed the plane was awful low,' said witness Stephen Lee, who said he, his wife and children noticed the aircraft 'gliding side to side a tiny bit' before it went down.
'The left wing hit the ground, the plane flipped over and burst into flames,' Lee said. 'The plane was immediately engulfed in flames from front to back.'
Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Mort Edelstein said eyewitnesses reported two explosions, but could not confirm the reports.
The DeKalb County Coroner's Office reported there were no survivors in the crash.
The sky divers were members of Hinckley Parachute, a group headquartered at Hinckley Airport.
The victims were described as four tandem masters, four students -- including three first-time jumpers and one three-time jumper -- two photographers and two pilots.
DeKalb County Coroner Dennis Miller identified the Illinois victims as Ron Harris, Rick Olchivck, Chris Daron, Ed Baron, pilot Jim Mahr, Bill Davidson and Glenn Holden.
Three victims were from Indiana: Don Anderson, John Murphy and Matt Bailey. Another victim, William Bayne, was from Maryland, Miller said.
The 12th victim's name was being withheld pending notification of relatives.