Indiana plane crash that killed four people had taken off from Destin airport

GREENSBURG, Ind. (AP) - Authorities say two Greensburg-area couples are the victims of a small plane crash near that southeastern Indiana city.

The Decatur County Emergency Management Department identifies the victims as 46-year-old Donald P. Horan and 44-year-old Barbara L. Horan and 45-year-old Stephen A. Butz and 42-year-old Denise L. Butz.

The single-engine Piper airplane that crashed in foggy and misty conditions was registered to Donald Horan. He's listed as the chief executive officer of Greensburg-based Collection Associates Inc., a collection service for the health care industry.

The emergency management agency says the plane crashed about a mile from Greensburg Municipal Airport. It says the airport's pilot-controlled runway lights are activated by radio, but were not on at the time of the crash Sunday night.

Greensburg police Capt. Bill Meyerrose said the plane originated from Destin, Fla.

Greg Otolski, a spokesman for the Indianapolis archdiocese, said Horan was active in raising money for the church and serves on the Catholic Community Foundation that oversees $138 million in endowments, deciding where money is spent for parishes, schools, cemeteries and charities.  He also was involved in raising money for a new St. Mary's Catholic School in Greensburg, Otolski said.

"He donated, in addition to his own money, a lot of his own time and expertise to try to make this possible.  His wife, Barb, also was involved with him a few years back in overseeing an annual appeal our archdiocese has," Otolski said.

A neighbor told The Indianapolis Star that Horan was community-minded and generous.

"It's a real tragedy," said Paul Walston, 84.. "I'd heard he was traveling with his wife. His whole family is great. It's pretty well known he gave a million dollars to help build a new Catholic school down here a few years back."

The plane crashed Sunday evening about a mile from the Greensburg Municipal Airport. The Federal Aviation Administration says the plane had been cleared to approach the airport but never arrived. Someone called the sheriff's department at 6:19 p.m. Sunday saying he believed he had seen a plane crash. The FAA said it had been tracking the plane and lost contact about two miles from the airport. The plane crashed in a wooded area about 40 miles southeast of Indianapolis.

Weather conditions hampered the search for the wreckage, which wasn't found until about four hours, Meyerrose said.

Print this article Back to Top

Comments