Country music icon Troy Gentry's helicopter accident explained by experts.
On September 8, 2017, the world of country music was shaken by the news of the death of Troy Gentry, one half of the "Montgomery Gentry" duo.
Helicopter pilot James Evan Robinson was taking Gentry on an afternoon "pleasure flight” before a scheduled concert at the airport when the tragic accident occurred, reported NBC News on November 9, 2018.
“It is with great sadness that we confirm that Troy Gentry, half of the popular country duo, Montgomery Gentry, was tragically killed in a helicopter crash which took place at approximately 1 p.m. today in Medford, New Jersey. (...) Troy Gentry was 50-years-old. Details of the crash are unknown."
Mongomery Gentry/Twitter, September 8, 2017.
As the country star and his pilot took off on the Schweizer 269 C-1, Eddie Montgomery, and other band members were at the airport watching.
Shortly after takeoff, Robinson reported that he couldn't control the engine. Tower control suggested he do a shallow, run-on landing, but the pilot decided to cut the engine and try to glide in. According to investigators, Robinson initiated his glide too soon and crashed disastrously into the nearby woods.
Gentry was cut from the helicopter wreckage and transported to the hospital in Evesham, where he was pronounced dead
Robinson lost control of the engine due to an engine maintenance problem. According to the National Transportation Safety Board's final report on the incident, the origin of the fatal crash was the maintenance crew's failure to “properly rig the throttle control tie-rod assembly,” which failed in flight and caused the pilot to lose control of the engine speed.
Robinson was pronounced dead at the crash scene, and Gentry was cut from the helicopter wreckage and transported to the hospital in Evesham, where he was pronounced dead. He was the only passenger in the helicopter that afternoon.
Angela Gentry has filed a wrongful death lawsuit in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas against helicopter manufacturers Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, Sikorsky Global Helicopters, and Keystone Helicopter Corporation.
It is alleged that the manufacturers had knowingly failed to incorporate “crashworthy features” in the civilian model of the helicopter, even though they had previously been incorporated in a military version of the aircraft.
Troy Gentry, was 50-years-old when he passed away, and he had been riding high on the country music and radio charts since the early 2000s, with his singing partner Eddie Montgomery.
The two men met in their native Kentucky and released six studio albums as "Montgomery Gentry" for Nashville division of Columbia Records.
These 6 albums produced more than twenty chart singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts and resulted in 5.2 million albums sold in the U.S. alone, and 6.4 million song downloads.
Troy Gentry is survived by his wife Angie, their daughter Kaylee, and his daughter from a previous marriage, Taylor.
In a related story, we pay homage to the iconic country stars who passed away in 2018.