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NTSB report says exact cause may never be known in plane crash that killed owner of Pagel’s Ponderosa Dairy

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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) The final report has been released from the investigation into a plane crash in Indiana, that took the lives of three Wisconsin men, one Kewaunee County dairy-owner John Pagel.
As Kris Schuller explains an exact cause may never be known.

The National Transportation Safety Board report comes roughly 20 months after a twin-engine Cessna, bound for Wisconsin, crashed 20 minutes after take-off near Rossville, Indiana on February 22, 2018.

On-board that aircraft, Kewaunee dairy-owner John Pagel, his son-in-law Steve Witcpalek and the pilot Nathan Saari. All three died in the crash.

The NTSB blames the probable cause of the crash as “An in-flight loss of control for reasons that could not be determined based on available evidence.”

Investigators say shortly after take-off the pilot told an air traffic controller the airplane “….was a little out of control” and he had “a trim issue,” meaning a problem keeping the airplane level.

After regaining control the plane remained on course until the pilot again reported having difficulty controlling the airplane saying, “…my trim is kind of going out on me.”

Shortly after that all communications and radar contact were lost. The plane’s last recorded altitude was roughly 18,000 feet.

The aircraft crashed in a muddy field near Rossville, Indiana, about 60 northwest of Indianapolis.

The three men were flying to Green Bay Austin Straubel Airport after a business trip to Indiana. John Pagel owned Pagel’s Ponderosa Dairy, as well as the Cannery Public Market in downtown Green Bay

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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