Richard Martin's body was discovered Thursday afternoon after first responders were alerted to an airplane that had crashed in a wooded area
The body of an 82-year-old Michigan pilot was found after he was last seen taking off Sunday in his home-built plane.
Richard Martin's body was discovered Thursday afternoon after first responders involved with the search and rescue were alerted to an airplane that had crashed in a wooded area off of M-51 North near Elm St., about two miles north of Dowagiac, the Dowagiac Police Department said in a news release.
"First Responders were guided to the location of a downed airplane by Michigan State Police Aviation Unit," police added. "Once, on scene Officers located the downed aircraft and confirmed it was a silver Sonex Airplane with Tail Number N569SX."
Martin's body was then found at the crash site with his plane, police added.
The search for Martin began after his small plane took off from Dowagiac Municipal Airport around 11 a.m. local time Sunday, per a previous news release.
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Oscar Azevedo, Martin's close friend and airport manager, told CBS affiliate WWMT-TV that Martin
took the "routine flight" inside his 2005 experimental aircraft. ""It’s something he does frequently when the weather is good," Azevedo added.
By Wednesday, drones, ATVs, planes and people were being used in the search, per CBS affiliate WSBT-TV. Martin did not share a flight plan, which made it difficult to find him.
Kathy, Richard's wife, would always wait for him to return from his flights, according to WWMT-TV. The pair would arrive at the airport, and she tanned as her husband flew, Azevedo noted.
"The time frame was entirely too long that it took him to come back this time," he said. Kathy had been hopeful that her husband was still alive, per WWMT-TV.
An investigation into what caused his plane to crash is ongoing, the department said.
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