RICHLAND, Wash. - A Richland man was killed after his plane crashed at the Richland Airport just before two o'clock Thursday afternoon.
Richland Police said 72 -year-old Charles Bigelow of Richland was dead at the scene.
Authorities said Bigelow's Ultralight experimental one seater came down head first near the runway. Bigelow was the only one on board.
Witnesses told police that it appeared that the engine's RPMs were going up and down before the crash.
Longtime friend Robert VerSteeg said Bigelow loved all kinds of fast paced outdoor activities.
VerSteeg was sad to hear the news of his death. He said, "I miss him already ... a lot of people liked him and he'll be missed. We feel for the family."
Police Captain Mike Cobb said, "Anytime something like this happens when someone was essentially enjoying themselves is very, very sad."
Police said there was no fire when the plane crashed.
Bigelow raced his way into the Guinness Book of World Records in a car that was made in West Richland September 2007. He was the driver of a car that reached speeds of more than 256 miles per hour.
With Bigelow behind the wheel the Ultimate Aero Twin Turbo set a new record.
Bigelow was even interviewed live on KNDU after the record was set.