Otay Mountain, CA Private Jet Crashes, Mar 1991


Otay, Calif. (AP) -- Seven members of country-western singer Reba McEntire's band, along with her road manager and two pilots, were killed when a private plane bound for Amarillo, Texas, crashed in a mountain area near the Mexican border early Saturday, officials said.
The crash occurred about 3:45 a.m. CST, shortly after the Hawker Sidley aircraft had taken off from Brown Field, a private airfield about 15 miles southeast of San Diego and about four miles north of the Mexican border.
Miss McEntire was not aboard, said her spokeswoman, Jenny Bohler.
There were no survivors, Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Elly Brekke said.
Ms. Bohler said those on the plane included:
Tour manager JIM HAMMON.
Band leader KIRK CAPPELLO, who played keyboards.
MICHAEL THOMAS, guitarist.
TERRY JACKSON, guitarist.
JOEY CIGAINERO, keyboardist.
TONY SAPUTO, drummer.
CHRIS AUSTIN, a vocalist who played fiddle and acoustic guitar.
DON HOLMS, pilot.
Investigators combing the wreckage discovered there were two pilots on the plane, rather than one as earlier suspected, said San Diego County sheriff's Sgt. Julie Sutton.
The band members all were under 30 years old and lived in Nashville, Ms. Bohler said.
"Needless to say Reba is very upset," Ms. Bohler said. "They all had been with her a long time. They were like family. She's lost eight family members."
Two other band members and several of Miss McEntire's road crew were on another flight that left before the one that crashed, she said.
Ms. Bohler said Miss McEntire and her band had performed in San Diego Friday night. The singer stayed behind in San Diego and was going to take another flight today. The band's concerts in Fort Wayne, Ind., tonight and Evansville, Ind., on Sunday night were canceled, she said.
Miss McEntire, 35, is the only singer ever voted female vocalist of the year four times by the Country Music Association, from 1984 through 1987. Her hit records include "Whoever's in New England," "Little Rock," "Walk On" and "Rumor Has It."
The pilot was filing his flight plan over the radio with air traffic controllers when contact with the plane was lost, Ms. Brekke said.

Paris News Texas 1991-03-17