Another Tragedy in Chetek Area
CHETEK, Wis. (AP) — Sheriff's officials in northwestern Wisconsin have identified the teens involved in a fatal plane crash.
The Barron County Sheriff's Department says 17-year-old Owen Knutson died when the single-engine plane he was piloting crashed into a river in a rural area near Chetek Wednesday evening. An 18-year-old passenger, Hunter Gillett, was seriously injured. Chetek-Weyerhaeuser High School senior is hospitalized at St. Marys Hospital in Rochester, Minnesota.
Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald said Thursday the plane wreckage was located in the Red Cedar River just south of Chetek. He says Knutson had taken off from a private air strip on his family's property nearby.
Fitzgerald says first responders had a difficult time locating the wreckage which was about a quarter mile from any roadway.
Cameron School District Administrator Joe Leschisin says Gillett was a standout student-athlete at the high school and was set to graduate on Friday. Leschisin was on his way to Rochester to visit Gillett who he describes as a hard-working, respectful young man.
Federal investigators will search for the cause of the crash, which is about seven miles from last week's tornado touchdown that caused one fatality and widespread damage.