NTSB Releases Details of Helicopter Crash that Killed Newlyweds
UVALDE, TX -- The National Transportation Safety Board released a preliminary report this week detailing the helicopter crash in Uvalde County that killed a newlywed couple and the pilot.
According to the NTSB, the helicopter left a private ranch around 11:45 p.m. on Nov. 4 before crashing into the side of a 1,450-foot hill.
The hill was located only five miles away from the ranch where William Byler and Bailee Ackerman Byler, both 24, had just been married.
The Bell 206B helicopter, N417WT, impacted terrain outside Uvalde. The airline transport rated pilot along with the newlywed couple were fatally injured, and the helicopter was destroyed.
Technical representatives from the airframe and engine manufacturers inspected the wreckage on site.
The helicopter impacted the hill about 100 ft from the apex, a wreckage path estimated about 75-100 yds long ran along the hill to the main wreckage.
First responders had attached ropes to the wreckage to keep it from rolling down the steep hillside.
The hillside also prevented a detailed examination of the wreckage on site.
The NTSB says the helicopter was registered to and operated by W T Byler company, Inc. as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal fight.
The flight departed a private ranch about en route to San Antonio.
The crash killed William, Bailee and pilot Gerald Douglas Lawrence.
Uvalde County Justice of the Peace Steven Kennedy said Lawrence served as a pilot during the Vietnam war.
The helicopter was transported to a salvage facility for a detailed examination at a later date.