Former Mayor Dies After Plane Crashes Into Beach


Nicole Silverio Media Reporter
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A plane crash on a California beach Thursday afternoon killed former Santa Monica Mayor Rex Minter, authorities announced.

A single-engine Cessna 150 crashed on the shores of Santa Monica Beach while Minter was on board, Santa Monica city officials announced in a press release. Emergency responders rushed to the scene and found the aircraft flipped upside on the surf line.

Officials transported Minter and one other passenger to the hospital, officials said. Santa Monica Mayor Gleam Davis confirmed one of the passengers to be Minter, who served as the city’s mayor from 1963 to 1967.

“Sadly, former SM mayor and judge Rex Minter was the passenger in the plane that crashed on the beach south of the Pier this afternoon,” Davis wrote on Twitter. “He has passed away. I have spoken with his family and relayed the City’s deepest condolences for them.”

Two passengers were aboard when the pilot reported engine issues shortly after taking off from the Santa Monica Airport en route to Miami, Florida, KCBS-TV reported. The pilot attempted to return to the airport but decided to make an emergency landing.

“Landing on the beach is at your own risk,” the air traffic controller warned. The pilot replied that he wished he had “another choice.” (RELATED: REPORT: Two Politicians Survive Horrific Crash Caught On Camera In Brazil)

Minter and the other passenger were trapped inside the aircraft, leading officials with the Santa Monica Fire Department and police department to pull them out, KTLA-75 reported. When pulled from the aircraft, one passenger reportedly suffered from cardiac arrest. The pilot was transported to the hospital and their conditions are currently unknown.

The National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration are currently investigating the crash, the outlet reported.

The late mayor served on the Santa Monica City Council after being elected in 1955, according to the release. After stepping down as mayor, he served as City Attorney for Arcadia and as a judge for the Los Angeles County Superior Court.

“The City of Santa Monica mourns the passing of former Mayor Rex H. Minter (1927 – 2022), and we send our deepest condolences to his children, grandchildren, family members, and his many friends throughout Santa Monica,” city officials wrote.