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The Associated Press

GREAT FALLS (AP) — Investigation of a fatal plane crash near Monarch last year revealed errors by the pilot, the National Transportation Safety Board said Tuesday.

The crash in a snowstorm on May 31, 2000, killed all three people aboard the twin-engine Cessna 414 owned by Lynch Flying Service of Billings. The plane was flying from Great Falls to Billings when it crashed into central Montana’s Barker Mountain.

Errors by the pilot included not maintaining adequate air speed during a descent, the NTSB said. The plane was flown by David Todd Whitman, 32, who had just arrived in Montana from Texas and had been hired by Lynch.

In addition to Whitman, the crash killed Vincent Frezzo, 58, and Nick Sorenson, 43. Frezzo was seated next to Whitman and was considered the pilot in command. Searchers found the wreckage the day after the crash, about 7,500 feet up the southwest side of 8,300-foot Barker Mountain.

Copyright 2001 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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