Pilot in Marana crash dies
Photo courtesy of Northwest Fire, A plane crashed at Marana Regional Airport Saturday morning and its pilot, instructor Robert Cloutier, died as a result of the crash. A 16-year-old passenger, Julia Nicholson, was expected to be released from the hospital Monday or Tuesday of this week.

A flight instructor involved in a Saturday morning airplane crash at Marana Regional Airport has died of his injuries, according to Northwest Fire Captain Adam Goldberg.

The pilot, Robert E. Cloutier, 45, succumbed to injuries suffered in the crash late Sunday night or early Monday morning.

His passenger, Julia Nicholson, 16, an Ironwood Ridge High School student, was seriously injured in the crash. She was expected to be released from the hospital this week, Goldberg said.

The plane had just taken off when it made a right-hand turn back toward the runway and crashed, witnesses said. It was a Remos G3-600, a two-seat sports plane.

Nicholson was taking a flight with Cloutier to decide if she would like to take flying lessons. During the flight, Nicholson's mother was on the ground videotaping and captured the crash, Goldberg said.

The inquiry into what happened is still under investigation. Marana police took eyewitness accounts from pilots in the air, witnesses on the ground and other people at the airport. The investigation was later handed over to the National Transportation Safety Board, which turned the investigation over to a Federal Aviation Administration investigator.

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