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Rapid descent seen in plane crash that killed Oklahoma couple in Arkansas

HUNTSVILLE, Ark. — A preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board says a plane descended at a high rate of speed before crashing in western Arkansas, killing an Oklahoma couple.

BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Modified: November 6, 2013 at 9:07 am •  Published: November 6, 2013

HUNTSVILLE, Ark. — An Oklahoma pilot whose plane crashed in western Arkansas last month, killing him and his wife, told air traffic controllers that there was stormy weather along his flight route before the plane went down, according to a preliminary report.

The National Transportation Safety Board report didn't list a cause for the Oct. 21 crash that killed Ivan Williams III and his wife, Adina Beth Williams, who was the only other person onboard. But it noted that Ivan Williams advised air traffic controllers of bad weather along his flight route.

"A controller gave the pilot headings to fly around the weather," the report said. "The airplane was observed to descend at a high rate of speed following the turn and no further radio contact was established with the pilot."

Madison County Sheriff Phillip Morgan previously said rainy weather could have been a factor in the crash, according to a local newspaper. The wreckage of the plane was discovered a day after the crash.

"The engine was separated from its engine mount and the engine was found near the bottom of the hill by the end of the debris path," the report states. "The propeller and the rear mounted accessories were separated from the engine."

Williams was president and chief executive officer of Williams Construction Co. in Pryor, Okla. has disabled the comments for this article.