Friends, Family Mourn Seven Victims of Illinois Plane Crash
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (AP) — As family, friends and colleagues mourned the loss of the seven victims of a small plane crash in central Illinois, authorities were investigating but had no immediate word on the cause.
The aircraft was returning from the NCAA basketball tournament in Indianapolis when it crashed in a field near Bloomington early Tuesday, killing all on board. Among the victims was Illinois State University's associate head basketball coach and a deputy athletics director.
The county coroner says all seven victims, who were found strapped in their seats, died from blunt force trauma resulting from the crash.
The National Transportation Safety Board says its full investigation is expected to take a year to 18 months.
(Story by: David Mercer, Jason Keyser, The Associated Press, with editorial note by WIBX)
[EDITOR's NOTE: Torrey Ward was the Illinois State University associate men's basketball coach and Aaron Leetch was the Deputy Athletic Director killed in the crash.]