Aviation News

February 3, 2012

Audio: Chilling Recording Captures Final Seconds of Boise Plane Crash That Killed Micron Technology CEO

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By: NYCA Admin
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Lancair IV-P
A Lancair IV-P similar to the accident aircraft. (File photo)
The CEO of computer memory manufacturer Micron Technology was killed when the plane he was piloting crashed at Boise International Airport on Friday morning.

Steve Appleton, 51, had just taken off in a single-engine, Lancair IVP-TP (N321LC) when it turned back to the airport.

A recording of air traffic control conversation between the plane and the Boise control tower captured the flight’s chilling last moments.

Just after an air traffic controller instructs another plane to taxi onto the runway for takeoff, Appleton, with an audible sense of urgency in his voice radios the tower, “321 Lima Charlie, I’d like to turn back in, and uhh, land. Coming back in.”

The air traffic controller begins to respond, only to be drowned out by people yelling expletives in the background, apparently while witnessing Appleton’s plane going down. The controller himself is heard uttering “oh shi…” just before his mic cuts off.

Audio courtesy of LiveATC.net

A few seconds later, the controller tells the plane on the runway that his takeoff clearance is cancelled, while a woman in the background is heard crying, “oh god, oh god.”

Appleton was a respected pilot who performed aerobatic acts at airshows. He owned several aircraft according to the FAA database.

The Lancair is a four-seat, experimental-type plane sold as a home-built kit, propelled by a 350-hp Continental turbo-prop engine.

Thumbnail image from KTVB.