PROMONTORY, Box Elder County — A search and rescue operation is underway Saturday after two men who flew an aircraft out of Ogden-Hinckley Airport Friday afternoon never made it back as scheduled, officials report.
Pilot Denny Mansell, 71, and his passenger Peter Ellis, 74, flew out of the Ogden airport at about 3:30 p.m. in a red and white Cessna 172, N4395R, according to Box Elder County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Dale Ward. The pair had planned to fly to the Promontory area and see the trains at the Golden Spike National Historic Site from the air before returning to Ogden at about 4:30 p.m.
At about 9:20 p.m., Box Elder Communications was notified of the overdue aircraft and a check of the local airports was requested.
Officials with the Department of Public Safety began a helicopter search Friday night concentrating in the Promontory area while deputies conducted a ground search along roads, Ward said.
The airspace in the red circle has been restricted while search and rescue crews looked for the missing plane today. pic.twitter.com/5JGKWFxZnB— Sean Moody (@SeanMoodyKSL) December 31, 2017
On Saturday morning, ground crews, the Civil Air Patrol and a DPS helicopter continued searching for the aircraft and men. Some of Mansell and Ellis' friends and family took part in the air search until the Federal Aviation Administration restricted the airspace while the Civil Air Patrol flew search patterns in the area.
Officials plan to suspend the search efforts at dark and resume again Sunday morning.
Contributing: Sean Moody