Authorities have identified a pilot killed Thursday afternoon in a plane crash near a private airport in southeast Antelope Valley.
Channing Morse, 67, of San Diego, died when the plane crashed into a rural area in Llano, according to the Los Angeles County coroner's office. Morse was an experimental test pilot.
The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the cause of the crash.
Morse, a U.S. Air Force Academy graduate, was volunteering his time for the Wounded Warrior Project that day, his sister said. He was giving free glider rides to wounded warriors.
FOR THE RECORD
Sept. 4, 10:58 a.m.: This article states that the victim's sister said he was volunteering with the the Wounded Warrior Project. A Wounded Warrior Project spokesman said he was not affiliated with the organization.
Morse, who was a chopper pilot during the Vietnam War, was flying a Piper PA-25 and had just launched a glider when he crashed into an open field in the area of 165th Street and East Avenue X about 12:10 p.m., his sister said.
The crash occurred near the Southern California Soaring Academy, which offers glider flight training.
Piper PA-25's are used for agricultural spraying, launching gliders and towing banners.
Not far from the crash site sits the Crystalaire Country Club, a privately owned golf facility that has its own airstrip.
The airstrip is mostly used by glider planes.
Morse, who was one voted as U.S. Test Pilot of the year, is survived by his wife, daughter and grandchild.