As many as six people, three of them children, are feared dead after their plane crashed into a rugged mountain east of Phoenix during a Thanksgiving trip Wednesday, officials said.
The aircraft, a Rockwell AC 69, crashed about 6:30 p.m. in the Superstition Mountains near Apache Junction, said Pinal County Sheriff's spokesman Elias Johnson.
It had flown from Safford to Mesa where it picked up the children for the Thanksgiving holiday, said Sheriff Paul Babeu.
Rescue crews searching for survivors in jagged terrain found the body of a child. There may have been as many as six people on board, including two other children, Babeu said.
"We hope there are survivors, but it does not look promising," he said.
The children ranged in age from 5 to 9, authorities said.
A man who said he witnessed the impact told CNN that a mushroom cloud of flames lit up the evening sky.FULL STORY