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February 28, 2015
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Posted: Monday, July 28th 2014 at 7:20am

Victim of Rabun Co. plane crash identified

By Brian Stewart Staff
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A plane that crashed Saturday in Rabun County took off from private community airport Heaven's Landing. (Photo by Rob Moore)
RABUN COUNTY - The Rabun County coroner has identified the pilot killed when his small plane crashed in northeast Georgia as 62-year-old Ernest Merkelis of Clayton.

Merkelis was the lone occupant on the plane.

Rabun County EMA Director Michael Mazarky said Saturday the crash happened around 9:00 a.m. shortly after takeoff.

The case has been turned over to the FAA at this point.

An associate from Heaven's Landing, where the plan took off, said the plane was bound for Chicago, and from there was going to continue on to Wisconsin.

Heaven's Landing is a private flying community on Little Creek Road off Devil's Branch Road northwest of Clayton.

He said the plane took off in low visibility and clipped the top of a nearby mountain.

Associated Categories: Homepage, Local/State News

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