Hundreds of first responders and law enforcement officials spent hours searching for a plane that put out a distress beacon near Mobile Regional Airport on the evening of Feb. 1.
However, their only discovery was the wreckage of a Civil Air Patrol Cessna 182 a mile west of the facility after a crash killed both occupants.
On Tuesday morning, officials with the Civil Air Patrol’s Alabama Wing released the names of the deceased — identifying Major David R. Mauritson of Fairhope and 2nd Lt. Phil J. Dryden of Gulf Shores as the victims.
Though the details of what caused the crash have not been determined, officials have said the two pilots were returning to Mobile from a “medical mercy” trip to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, when the crash occurred.
The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board have notified about the incident, and the NTSB will lead the rest of the investigation.