An Army National Guard soldier and his brother were trying to sprinkle their father’s ashes when the plane they were flying crashed on takeoff.
On Friday, Massachusetts Army National Guardsman Scott Landis was piloting a single-engine plane with his brother, Patrick, the Boston Herald reported. The plane’s engine lost power and crashed into a pond, killing Landis and leaving his brother paralyzed from the waist down.
The 34-year-old soldier and his 29-year-old brother wanted to scatter their father's ashes after he died from cancer on Aug. 14.
Landis joined the Army in 2001 as an aviation operation specialist and served three active-duty combat tours, according to his obituary. He started flying when he was 16 and later became a Black Hawk pilot and instructor in the Army.
Landis, a chief warrant officer, was stationed in Kosovo but was on leave when his father died.
His brother, Patrick, suffered a spinal injury and broken bones from the crash, according to a GoFundMe campaign set up by his aunt. The fund has raised almost $17,000 so far.
A GoFundMe for Landis' wife and son was also set up and has raised more than $62,000.
The Massachusetts native was flying an Aeronca 7AC Champion, according to the Boston Herald.
“Salt of the earth, a great guy. Scott is just a great guy, always willing to help anybody out, do anything, a gentleman,” Peter Oakley, manager of the Cranland Airport where the plane took off, told the Boston Herald.
Charlsy is a Reporter and Engagement Manager for Military Times. Email her at email@example.com.