Accident and Safety Awareness Blog - Lexton Personal Injury Lawyers
A pilot and three members of the Zitting Family died in a tragic plane accident in Harrisburg, Oregon.
Zitting Family and Pilot Killed in Small Plane Crash in Harrisburg

“Thousand Oaks Family Killed”

HARRISBURG, ORGEON (April 13, 2017) – A Volkswagen EOS left at Westlake High School by 17 year old John Brendan Zitting has become a memorial for the teenager who was tragically killed in Friday’s small plane crash just outside of Harrisburg, Oregon. (map) 

The Piper PA-46-310P left California on Friday morning carrying 42 year old John Zitting Sr, 37 year old Karen Zitting, and their 17 year old son John Brendan Zitting, along with pilot Mark Aletky. The three Zittings were on their way to Eugene, Oregon to tour the University of Oregon campus where teenaged John was considering attending in the fall.

Pilot Mark Gregory Aletky, a 67 year old experienced pilot, had been contracted by John Zitting Sr to fly people from his construction company back and forth between their sites. Aletky was a chief pilot for Rotor F/X LLC, based out of Van Nuys, Cailfornia, although the plane was registered to Park City Aviation out of Utah. The plane took off from the Van Nuys airport on Friday around 7:22 am, and was flying on instrument as it approached the Eugene Airport. It continued past the airport for an unknown reason, before abruptly veering into a nearby grass field and crashing near Harrisburg around 11:00 am.

All three of the Zittings and the pilot, Mark Aletky, were tragically killed in the accident. The tail section of the six seater, single engine plane separated during the collision. The FAA and the NTSB both arrived on scene the same day to begin their investigation.

John Zitting Sr was the president of construction company TruNorthe, and the family lived in the the Conejo Park neighborhood of Thousand Oaks. Neighbors described them as quiet but friendly, and would often see Karen Blackmore Zitting walking the family dog, or see 17 year old John taking out the trash. John Brendan Zitting left his Volkswagen parked at his high school before the trip, and flowers and notes now adorn the vehicle as a memorial to the teenager who loved to swim and was described as kind and helpful by his peers.

“Sadly, there are no words that can comfort all family members and friends as they cope with such tragic loss,” said the attorneys from Lexton Law Firm. “Our thoughts and prayers are with all parties affected in this tragedy as they try to piece together what happened. We employ trained pilots on our staff who love the sport, and flying is generally a very safe way to travel.”

We at Lexton Law Firm extend our sincerest sympathies to the family of the victim in this tragic accident. We are so sorry for your loss. While we do handle personal injury cases, we write these blogs as an informative measure, to alert families that they may have a wrongful death claim. Choosing an attorney is a personal decision, and one we respect entirely. We would like the opportunity to help you through this difficult time. With decades of experience in the field of accidents, we are prepared to handle everything for you so that you do not have to worry about anything during this time of mourning. Gathering police and coroner’s reports, talking with insurance companies, and filing claims on your behalf are just some of the duties we would like to take off your shoulders. If you are interested, please call us today at (877) 541-2111. We are here to help you.


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