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Sheriff: Illinois pilot dies in helicopter crash

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014 8:28 a.m. CDT

MANSFIELD – Central Illinois authorities say a helicopter pilot has died after hitting power lines and crashing in a soybean field.

The Piatt County Sheriff's Office says 47-year-old Paul Reynolds of Mansfield was pronounced dead Tuesday. The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating. No other injuries were reported.

The sheriff says emergency responders found Reynolds' helicopter upside-down in the field near Mansfield. A resident in the area saw the helicopter go down and called for help.

The (Champaign) News-Gazette reports Reynolds had run a crop-dusting business since 2009. He trained to fly helicopters in the Army and flew in Operation Desert Storm.

FAA records show he was rated to fly both single-engine aircraft and helicopters.

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