Officials probe plane crash that killed 10

Oct. 25, 2004 at 3:36 PM
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MARTINSVILLE, Va., Oct. 25 (UPI) -- Federal officials Monday investigated a Hendrick Motorsports plane crash that killed 10 people in Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains.

The twin-engine Beech King Air 200 went down Sunday in rough terrain about seven miles west of Martinsville on a flight from Concord, N.C., where Hendrick, owner of the racing teams of such NASCAR drivers as Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon and Terry Labonte, has its headquarters.

Former NASCAR driver Ricky Hendrick, son of the company owner, Rick Hendrick, and other family members were among the victims of the crash.

The flight was bound for Martinsville where NASCAR's Subway 500 was being run,

Hendrick driver Johnson won the race but skipped his appearance at Victory Lane, NASCAR spokesman Jim Hunter said. He said the racing crew was not told about the crash until after the race.

Officials of the Federal Aviation Administration, National Transportation Safety Board and Virginia authorities were at the crash site Monday.

"At moments like this, it is difficult to adequately express the deep sense of loss so many friends and families are feeling," said Tony George, president of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

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