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Crash Kills Crop-Duster Pilot; Four Feared Dead In Second Crash

August 1, 1987

Undated (AP) _ The pilot of a crop-dusting plane was killed Friday when his aircraft crashed near Kalispell, Mont., while in Oregon, wreckage believed to be that of a plane that vanished last week with four people aboard was found, and there appeared to be no survivors.

Authorities said pilot Rodney A. Martin of Denton was killed instantly in the Montana crash when his plain hit a high-voltage power line and punged into a potato field, spilling a highly toxic phosphate insecticide called Monitor 4.

″Ambulance and fire crews at the scene were told to wash with soapy water at least twice, to destroy any leather shoes or boots ... and to burn (their) clothing,″ said Corky Derby, spokeswoman for the Flathead County sheriff’s office.

In the Siskiyou Mountains about 20 miles southwest of Medford, Ore., a tree-planting crew found wreckage Friday believed to be from a private airplane missing since it took off July 22 from Medford-Jackson County Airport, said Lt. Jim Van Sant of the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department.

″All appeared to be deceased,″ Van Sant said.

Sheriff’s Capt. Bob Kennedy said a team of deputies at the crash site described the wreckage as a ball of metal, making it difficult to confirm the identity of the aircraft or the number of victims.

The missing airplane, bound for San Diego, was piloted by Jesse Terry, 57, of San Diego and Hillsboro, Ore. Also aboard were his wife, Nellie; Clint Reed, 26; and Gregory Szego, 34, all of San Diego. Reed, formerly of Eugene, Ore., ran unsuccessfully for the Oregon Legislature last year.

George Algard, bureau chief of technical services for the Montana Agriculture Department in Helena, said an emergency response team from his agency and the state Health Department would be sent to help with cleanup and disposal of the insecticide in the Kalispell crash.

The Cessna probably carried about 100 gallons of the diluted insecticide, which he called one of the most toxic available, Algard said.

The insecticide can affect the human nervous system if a large enough dose comes into contact with skin or is inhaled, Algard said.

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