TOWN OF BERN (WAOW) -- The pilot of a small plane who died in a crash in Marathon County has been identified.
According to the Marathon County Sheriff's Department, Matthew Zocher, 24, from Merrill died after the plane he was piloting crashed in the town of Bern, just northwest of the village of Athens.
Authorities say Zocher was a Minnesota State University aviation student in Mankato. The plane that he piloted was affiliated with the schools aviation program.
Lt. Randy Albert from the Marathon County Sheriff's department said the single engine plane was found in a heavily wooded area. Zocher was pronounced dead on scene.
The cause of the crash is not yet known. Officials from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) were on scene Friday beginning their initial investigation.
An autopsy was performed Friday morning at UW-Madison Hospital. Medical Examiner John Larson said the man suffered blunt force injures.
Newsline 9 will update this story when more details become available.
MARATHON CO. (AP) - A 24-year-old man is dead after a small plane crash in central Wisconsin.
Marathon County Sheriff's Lt. Randy Albert says the man was piloting the single-engine plane believed to be owned by Minnesota State University in Mankato. He says the Federal Aviation Administration notified them at about 5 p.m. Thursday of a missing plane.
Officials started a search and found it about four hours later in a heavily wooded area in the Town of Bern. Albert says the man was alone on board and was dead when rescuers found him.
Albert says the man was on his way the Merrill airport. He says they believe the man lived in Minnesota, was affiliated with the school and was flying to Merrill to visit family for the holiday.
The Marathon County Sheriff's Department has confirmed one person is dead following a plane crash in the Town of Bern.
The single-engine plane was found near Highway 97 after the plane went off the radar.
The FAA and NTSB along with the Marathon County Sheriff's Department are investigating the cause of the crash.
Authorities have found the missing plane, according to the Marathon County Sheriff's Department.
Further information is not being released at this time.
WAOW has sent a crew to the scene.
According to the Lincoln County Sheriff's Department, officers were searching in the Town of Bern.
The single-engine plane was last seen on radar Wednesday evening at 10:45 p.m.
The search involved officers in Marathon, Lincoln, and Taylor counties.
If you have any information or saw anything unusual, please contact the police.