One person was killed when a single-engine biplane crashed in a field east of the Paso Robles Municipal Airport on Sunday morning.
Javier Fernando Arango, 54, of Los Angeles was the sole occupant in the World War I replica biplane when it took off from a private airstrip near the airport about 9 a.m., according to the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office. The plane crashed a few minutes later in the area of Highway 46 and Estrella Road.
Arango was a board member emeritus of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum and was a well-known member of the local aviation community.
He was also featured as a World War I aircraft enthusiast in Air & Space magazine, which said he had “one of the world’s finest private collections of World War I aircraft.”
The National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration are expected to investigate the crash.