Cirrus Aircraft shares statement about engineer who died in crash on Friday

The man who died in a plane crash on Friday in Duluth was a longtime employee of Cirrus Aircraft.

The company sent a statement on Monday morning:

“Dave Rathbun, Vision Jet Chief Engineer, was involved in a fatal aircraft accident while on a personal flight Friday afternoon in a privately-owned 2016 Cirrus SR22. He was flying solo in the aircraft at the time and was the only person involved. We are in close contact with the Rathbun family, and our thoughts and prayers are with them at this time. 

His passing is a profound loss for the Cirrus family. His presence and character will be missed, but his legacy will be indelible. A key contributor throughout his 26 years at Cirrus Aircraft, Dave played a crucial role in the early design and certification of the SR20.  Following similar work on the SR22 and SR22T, Dave was instrumental in the development and successful entry into service of the SF50 Vision Jet.  

Cirrus Aircraft personnel are fully engaged in supporting all appropriate authorities in the investigation. With respect to those involved, and as the initial investigation begins, we will not comment on the accident details or speculate about the accident’s cause.”

The plane went down near Grassy Point on Friday afternoon.