Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version Share this


By Miriam Raftery


August 2, 2010 (Tierrasanta) – A pilot who reported a door falling off in flight crashed onto the 11th hole at Admiral Baker Golf Course in Tierrasanta this afternoon, killing a woman passenger and injuring four others.  The plane was a single-engine Velocity Super XLRG5.

“Whoever was at the helm of that plane was a hero in my mind.  It could have been much worse,” Arrit McPherson told East County Magazine, before news of the fatality was known. “There are a lot of houses around here, as well as power lines.”  McPherson was working on his boat, Treasure Seeker, at San Diego Boat Movers, when he saw the pilot make an evasive move to avoid striking his boat, then head for an opening between trees at the golf course.


“That was a terrifying moment,” said McPherson, who was working on his boat when he heard the plane approaching. “It was just getting louder and louder, so I looked back and saw the plane about 50 feet above the ground, maybe even less. He barely missed our boat, which is 22 feet.“ The boat, a 49-passenger “pirate boat” with water cannons is set to launch in Mission Bay soon, he said. “We were going to put up a mast last weekend.” Had the mast gone up as planned, the ship would likely have been struck while he was working on it, he said.

Two children seriously injured in the crash were air-lifted to Rady Children’s Hospital, the Union-Tribune reports. The pilot and a third child were transported to another area hospital. The plane had departed from Montgomery Field and was registered in Mesa, Arizona.

McPherson expressed hope that the pilot survived, adding that he was glad to see the plane come down without catching fire. “We’re praying for him,” the witness concluded.

Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.