Former Sikorsky Aircraft President Jeffrey Pino Killed in Crash

Former Sikorsky Aircraft President Jeffrey Pino has been killed in a small plane crash in Arizona.

Authorities say 61-year-old Pino was piloting a World War II-era plane when it crashed and burned near the town of Maricopa, Ariz.

The Pinal County Sheriff's Office identified the passenger as 72-year-old Nickolas Tramontano of Brookfield, Connecticut.

"The Sikorsky family is saddened to learn of the sudden loss of former President Jeff Pino. We extend our heartfelt condolences and prayers of sympathy and support to his family and friends during this difficult time," current president Dan Schultz said in a statement posted on the company's website.

Schultz said Pino was president for six years during which he "brought personal energy and passion for aviation innovation to our industry."

"We remember Jeff as a leader, pioneer, innovator and advocate. May his family be comforted by the lasting impression and legacy Jeff has left behind," Schultz said.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor said preliminary information on the Friday crash indicated the plane was a P-51D Mustang, a type of single-engine American fighter used during World War II.

The spokesman said the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the crash.

Maricopa is about 35 miles south of Phoenix.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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