Stunt Pilot Crashes Plane Into Gulf of Mexico

PORT RICHEY, Fla. (AP) _ A stunt pilot died when he crashed his plane into the Gulf of Mexico north of Tampa.

Police say 33-year-old John Paul Donnerfield was killed Monday around noon in the gulf off Port Richey.

Witnesses reported hearing the plane’s engine sputter and stall while Donnerfield was flying loops over the water.

The Tampa Bay Times ( ) reported that his wife was among the people watching his impromptu show before the plane plunged into the water.

Donnerfield had become a familiar site off the Port Richey coast, performing acrobatics in his homebuilt Pitts single-seat aircraft.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety
Board will investigate.