Our Klamath Basin
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Plane crash in park
Pilot was a former Bureau of Reclamation
former Bureau of Reclamation commissioner and an Arizona man were
killed Friday morning in a plane crash in the Needles District of
Canyonlands National Park.
The crash killed 66-year-old John W. Keys III, of Moab, and a
50-year-old Scottsdale, Ariz., man. It occurred about 10:30 a.m.,
a witness told the San Juan County Sheriff's Office.
The men were on a scenic flight over Canyonlands when the
Cesena 172 that Keys was piloting crashed. Keys was a pilot for
Red Tail Aviation.
San Juan Sheriff Office Sgt. Kelly Bradford said investigators
have not determined the cause of the crash. The plane wreckage was
found and the bodies of both men were recovered. The name of the
Arizona man was not released.
Keys was a reclamation employee for about four decades who
once served as Pacific Northwest regional director. He was running
unopposed for a Grand County council seat when he died, said
friend John Weisheit.
Weisheit floated the Colorado River with Keys last year, and
also debated him on Utah's water rights as executive director of
Living Rivers, a Moab-based activist group.
I'm sad, you know," Weisheit said. "I can't believe it. I just
saw him the other day and he looked great."
Weisheit said Keys was always friendly adding, "He was
definitely a bureau boy. He liked water projects."
Thursday May 07, 2009 09:14 AM Pacific
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