Asheville, NC (near) Private Plane Crash, Nov 1952


Asheville, N.C., Nov. 3 (AP) -- A Marion industrialish, his daughter who is a national champion horsewoman and two preparatory school students were killed near here today in the crash of a single-engine private plane.
The dead were identified by McDowell County Coroner S. J. Westmoreland as SIMEON ROAME CROSS, 45, president of the Cross Cotton Mills Co., in Marion; his daughter, ELIZABETH CROSS, 12 or 13, recent winner of a national trophy as a junior horseback rider awarded in memory of a man killed in a plane crash; ROBERT EUGENE LAMBETH, 15, son of Mr. and Mrs. R. E. Lambeth, Sr., of Marion; and BILLY WILKERSON, 15, son of Mr. and Mrs. William J. Wilkerson of Marion.
Westmoreland said CROSS was flying young LAMBETH and WILKERSON from Marion to Black Mountain so the two youths could return to their studies at Christ School near Asheville.
The crash occurred in a ruggedly mountainous section of McDowell County near the Buncombe County line and near a new super-highway from Ridgecrest to Old Fort. The plane burst into flames and started a forest fire.
FLOYD HUSKINS of Celo, a construction worker on the road project and one of the first to the scene, said he saw the plane flying along very low and that it suddenly dipped its nose and crashed.
The forest fire raged over a fairly large area of the mountain, but appeared to be surrounded by fire breaks in the form of work roads built for the highway project.
MRS. BOB HYATT of Old Fort said she heard a plane shortly before the crash occurred between 4:30 and 5 p.m. She said it passed over Old Fort at a low altitude and was apparently having engine trouble.
Lt. W. S. Hunt, executive officer of Troop E of the Highway Patrol, said he thought CROSS might have been trying to reach one of the level spots created by huge earth movers for the new highway. Hunt said the plane apparently stalled just before reaching a level spot, struck a tree, and plummeted down.
The Albert M. Jones Memorial Trophy for junior horseback riders was presented to MISS CROSS in ceremonies at the Fulton-Dekalb Shrine horse show in Atlanta last year.
The trophy is a memorial established by Mr. and Mrs. Albert M. Jones of Knoxville, Tenn., for their son who was fatally injured in a plane crash.

Florence Morning News South Carolina 1952-11-04