TRINIDAD — A Loveland man has been identified as the pilot killed when a single-engine plane crashed into an open field near the Las Animas County Fairgrounds in Trinidad around 1 pm Thursday, April 30. Gregory Arlen Frank, 53, was the only one aboard the plane when it crashed in an open field north of the fairgrounds, according to Las Animas County authorities. A witness reported seeing the plane circling over his property shortly before it crashed, according to reports. Las Animas County Sheriff James Casias said late last week the airplane was listed in November of 2014 as a missing airplane with the Longmont Police Department. The airplane was taken from the site and taken into custody for transportation, by an insurance company. Frank was born on March 5, 1962, in Denver. He is described in his obituary as an adventurous soul, who raced dirt bikes locally, regionally, and nationally for many years and also enjoyed fishing and off-roading. His latest adventure was learning to fly — a passion he ignited three years ago. Officials have not released any additional information on the plane crash. Las Animas County Undersheriff Derek Navarette said the investigation has been turned over to the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board. A service for Frank is scheduled for 2 pm tomorrow at Howe Mortuary in Longmont.
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