Two National Guardsmen killed in Arkansas plane crash

By  | 

CAMDEN, Ark. (AP) - Authorities say a plane that crashed in southwestern Arkansas claimed the lives of two Arkansas National Guardsmen.

The victims have been identified as:
CW2 Rufus Ferron Brown, 42, of Arkadelphia
CW2 Justin Levon Ashley, 31, of North Little Rock

Both men were UH-60 helicopter pilots with regiments in Little Rock.

Authorities say their plane crashed as they were trying to return to the Camden Municipal Airport immediately after takeoff. The crash happened around 6:45 pm on Sept. 25th.

Ouachita County Sheriff's Capt. Adam LaDuke told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that the pilot apparently made a hard turn to return to Camden Municipal Airport immediately after the wheels left the ground on Sunday. The plane crashed and burned in a grassy area near the airport, about 85 miles (137 kilometers) southwest of Little Rock.

Military officials say Brown and Ashley were off-duty at the time of the crash. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)