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2 killed in Utah County plane crash identified

(Steve Landeen/KSL-TV)


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CEDAR FORT, Utah County — Two people died in a plane crash Monday morning, according to Utah County Sheriff's Sgt. Spencer Cannon.

Police identified the victims as Donald Baker, 59, and Dawn Hunter, 55, of Tucson, Arizona. The husband and wife were returning home after a conference in Park City when the plane caught fire, according to Cannon.

Baker, the pilot, made a distress call before the plane crashed, Cannon said.

"We had witnesses who saw a plane go down," he said. "They reported they saw flames and heard a large noise or some kind of crash or explosion" around 10 a.m.

A twin-engine jet capable of carrying as many as 10 people went down about a mile east of state Route 73 in Cedar Fort, about three-quarters of a mile away from the nearest home, he said.

Authorities didn't know Monday whether there were additional fatalities aboard the aircraft or on the ground, according to Cannon.

"That debris field covers maybe as much as a mile, so we're going to be spending a lot of time looking there. We know there were at least two occupants, and both of those have died in the crash," he said.

It was not known Wednesday where the flight originated from, Cannon said, but he was certain it wasn't from the Cedar Valley Airport.

Search and rescue crews were expected to aid in the search.

"It's difficult. It's rural, open country there. There's deep snow," Cannon said, expressing concern that the debris from the crash could be buried by snow.

Contributing: Andrew Adams, Daphne Chen

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Lisa Riley Roche

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