5 family members en route to funeral, including 2 kids, killed in Georgia plane crash

Credit: Putnam County Sheriff's Office

Credit: Putnam County Sheriff's Office

Five family members were killed Friday afternoon when a small plane headed to Indiana crashed in a wooded area near Lake Oconee, authorities said.

The plane went down about 3:15 p.m. near Tanyard Road just north of Eatonton, Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills told AJC.com.

Emergency crews extinguished the flames but found no survivors aboard. The family of five included two young siblings, ages 4 and 6.

The pilot and owner of the plane was identified as Larry Ray Pruitt, 67, of Morriston, Fla., authorities said.

Also killed in the crash were Shawn Charles Lamont, 41, and his wife, Jody Rae Lamont, 43, both of Gainesville, Fla. The couple’s young children, 6-year-old Jayce and 4-year-old Alice, were also on board.

Sills said Jody Rae Lamont was Pruitt’s daughter.

According to an Alachua County, Fla., Communications Office news release, Jody Lamont worked as a drug counselor in the county's court system since November 2012. This year, she was named clinical supervisor and "was an excellent clinician with a bright future," the release said.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration, the twin-engine Piper PA-31T took off from Williston, Fla., and was flying to Indiana. Sills said the family was headed to a funeral in Newcastle.

FAA investigators returned to the crash site Saturday morning. The National Transportation Safety Board is also looking into what caused the crash.

NTSB spokesman Peter Knudson told the Gainesville Sun that the flight was set for an "instrument flight rules" plan at 25,000 feet, but the pilot later told air traffic controllers he was manually deviating around weather. Knudson said the "debris field was consistent with an in-flight breakup" of the aircraft.

The NTSB’s preliminary report should take a few weeks, Knudson told the newspaper, and the final report could take up to two years.

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