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Burned Pilot Gets Quick Lift

Sat., April 19, 1997

A spray plane pilot severely burned in a fiery crash was flown to a hospital by a helicopter pilot spraying a nearby field, Walla Walla County officials said Friday.

Neil Kenneth Shupe, owner of Shupe Flying Service of Prescott, was spraying herbicides and fertilizer over a field about nine miles north of town when his plane crashed Friday morning, the Walla Walla County Sheriff’s Office reported.

Shupe was flown to St. Mary Medical Center in Walla Walla by a helicopter pilot spraying an adjacent field. Tom Archer saw the crash or the aftermath, landed and picked up Shupe, sheriff’s detective Barry Blackman said.

Shupe, 37, suffered burns to his legs, arms and face, Blackman said. He was later flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

The cause of the crash wasn’t immediately known. The Federal Aviation Administration was notified and will investigate, officials said.

The plane was still burning when firefighters arrived about 30 minutes after the crash, said Fire District 7 Assistant Chief Rick Guse.

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