'I'm Praying It's Not Real': Small Plane Crash Kills 5

The plane was en route to a college football game
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 28, 2019 3:30 PM CST
'I'm Praying It's Not Real': Small Plane Crash Kills 5
A view of a damaged vehicle near the site of a plane crash near Feu Follet Road and Verot School Road in Lafayette, La., Saturday, Dec. 28, 2019.   (Scott Clause/The Lafayette Advertiser via AP)

(Newser) – A small plane en route to a college football game crashed into the parking lot of a post office in Louisiana shortly after takeoff on Saturday, killing five people and fully engulfing a car on the ground in flames, authorities said, per the AP. The two-engine Piper Cheyenne crashed in the city of Lafayette about a mile from the regional airport where the flight began, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Tony Molinaro said. Steven Ensminger Jr., the son of the offensive coordinator for the Louisiana State University football team, said his wife, sports reporter Carley McCord, was on board the flight and died when it crashed. He said the plane was en route to the Peach Bowl playoff game in Atlanta between LSU and Oklahoma.

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Ensminger said he was unable to go to the game and was at work when the crash happened. He said his father, Steven Ensminger, called him just before the elder Ensminger got to the stadium. "I just don't feel like this is real," says Ensminger Jr. "I'm praying it's not real." Video and photos showed a trail of scorched and burning grass around the crash site in the city of Lafayette. A blackened car sat in the post office parking lot, which was carpeted with scattered tree limbs. Four people were brought to the hospital: one from the plane, one on the ground, and two post office employees who were brought in for evaluation. An eight-passenger plane, the aircraft went down in a part of the city with a scattering of banks, fast food chains, and other businesses.

(Read more plane crash stories.)

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