published Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

Investigators release report on TN plane crash

VONORE, Tenn. — An initial investigation into a plane crash in the Cherokee National Forest says the wreckage was found upright and the deceased pilot was in the cockpit wearing an undeployed parachute.

Fargo Airshow Committee Co-Chairman Dick Walstad has identified the pilot as North Dakota native Jim Maroney, a popular performer who was headed to an airshow in Florida at the time of the crash on March 23. Maroney's single-engine World War II-era de Havilland DHC-1 was called the "Super Chipmunk."

According to an initial report from the National Transportation Safety Board, the damage to trees indicates the plane was flying near-level at impact. The engine controls were in the "full forward" positions and there was no evidence of fire.

Weather in Knoxville at the time included scattered clouds at 1,900 feet.

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