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Houston mother, son killed in plane crash in rural Tennessee

The single-engine Piper Cherokee was heading from Houston to Murray, Tennessee when it crashed into a swamp.
Credit: Haywood County Sheriff
A Houston mother and son were killed when their small plane crashed in rural west Tennessee.

HAYWOOD COUNTY, Tenn. — A Houston mother and son were killed when their small plane crashed in rural west Tennessee.

The victims, ages 74 and 54, had taken off from Houston on a flight to visit relatives in Tennessee, according to the Haywood County Sheriff’s Office.

Their single-engine Piper Cherokee crashed into a swamp in rainy weather late Tuesday. It's not clear if the weather was a factor in the crash. 

Searchers didn’t find the crash scene until Wednesday when a Tennessee Highway Patrol helicopter spotted wreckage in a heavily wooded area.

We are not releasing the victims’ names at this time, but a relative said “these two were blessings to so many and will both be sorely missed by all who knew them.”

Sheriff Billy Garrett told a local newspaper that he had to break the news to the man’s daughter in Houston.

“This is one of the hardest things I’ve ever experienced. I tell you, I’m 63 years old and I’ve been in law enforcement over 40 years, but it really hurt my heart to have to notify this man’s daughter …,” Garrett told the Murray Ledger. “It was horrible. She took it very, very hard, and that’s to be expected, really, but it hurts an old man to hear a young person cry like that.”

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the cause of the crash.