ADELANTO (CBS/AP)— An off-duty Los Angeles Fire Department helicopter pilot and paramedic was killed and a boy was critically injured Monday when a fixed-wing aircraft crashed into a dry lake bed in the Mojave Desert.
The incident happened around 11:15 a.m. at El Mirage Dry Lake.
“The pilot began experiencing some problems…caused the aircraft to go into a nosedive. When he tried to correct and land the aircraft, the aircraft began doing a couple of barrel rolls,” Cpl. Randy Naquin of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department said.
The San Bernardino County Fire Department airlifted Brian Lee, a 25-year veteran who worked out of Fire Station 114 at the Van Nuys Airport, and a young boy to local trauma centers.
Lee, 47, later succumbed to his injuries. The boy, who is a relative of Lee’s close friend, was in critical condition.
KCAL9’s Rachel Kim reports that off-duty LAFD colleagues of Lee witnessed the accident.
“What we came to find out was the aircraft had been towed here by the firefighters. They were out here, basically, camping,” Naquin said.
Fire officials took to Twitter to remember and honor Lee.
The cause of the crash is under investigation.
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