Engine problems were behind the New Jersey helicopter crash that killed 50-year-old country music singer Troy Gentry, the National Transportation Safety Board has found.
The NTSB issued a preliminary report on the accident Wednesday, which revealed that the helicopter’s pilot — who also died in the crash — reported mechanical problems just several minutes after takeoff.
Two flight instructors tried to talk the pilot through the issues plaguing the aircraft, and the trio discussed different landing possibilities, the report states.
Troy Gentry died Friday in a helicopter crash in New Jersey.
(Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Eventually, he opted to turn off the engine and perform an autorotation, something he’d successfully done multiple times in the past.
Autorotations are frequently used in cases of engine failure, and use air moving up through the rotor during descent to power the helicopter’s blades, essentially allowing it to glide to the ground.
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However, the plane soon crashed in a wooded area near the Flying W Airport in Medford, N.J.
Gentry, who was a member of the Grand Ole Opry, was one half of the popular duo Montgomery Gentry. He was scheduled to perform a concert at the airport’s resort later that evening with musical partner Eddie Montgomery.
The singer is survived by his wife, Angie, and daughters Kaylee and Taylor.