The teenager who was killed alongside a British pilot when their light plane collided with another aircraft in the south of France has been pictured.
Lewis Stubbs, 18, and Andrew Buck, 37, were flying in a two-seated leisure plane when it went down over the French-Italy border on Wednesday.
Heartbroken friends and family have paid tribute to Mr Stubbs, from Newcastle, who was on a ‘trip of a lifetime’ with a group of several planes that took off from Northumberland on route to Malta.
Lewis Stubbs (pictured), 18, was the passenger a two-seated leisure plane when their plane went down over the French-Italy border on Wednesday
Paying tribute, a childhood friend wrote on Mr Stubb’s Facebook: ‘RIP Brother. Gone far too soon.
‘Was just a few backs we were making plans after not seeing each other for a while.
‘Hope your resting easy up there. See you in another life mate. Love ya kid.’
While another penned: ‘I honestly cant believe its happened to you. You didn’t deserve to go so soon.
Heartbroken friends and family have paid tribute to Mr Stubbs, from Newcastle, who was on a ‘trip of a lifetime’ with a group of several planes
‘You never failed to make anyone laugh and that’s all down to the amazing personality you’ve got.
‘Never a dull moment. Always walking around with the biggest smile on your face no matter what the situation was. RIP brother until we meet again.’
The plane was part of a group of aircraft which had travelled from an airfield in Northumberland on Sunday and were heading for Malta.
Pictures from the scene showed the mangled wreckage of one of the planes that had landed in a wood.
Andrew Buck, 37, has been named as the pilot that died
Mr Pike, a pilot who was with them, said the pair were on a ‘trip of a lifetime’ which had been planned for over a year.
Mr Buck’s sister, Lisa Crowe, confirmed her brother had died, as she launched a crowd-funding appeal to help her parents with the financial burden of his death.
Ms Crowe said on a Gofundme page: ‘My parents and I received the incomprehensible news that my little brother Andrew was tragically killed in an accident while flying over the French Alps…..’
She said: ‘My husband Steve and I are beyond grateful for everyone’s kind words and support at this time and I know my parents feel the same.’
Pictures from the scene showed the mangled wreckage of one of the planes that had landed in a wood
‘Gut wrenching news this morning that our son Andrew Buck of Seaham Harbour has died in a light aircraft in the French Alps.
‘Oh god, how do Dianne and me carry on. Love you son’ his father Les wrote on Facebook.
He had started a new job as an Air Ambulance Dispatch Operator in Darlington in April.
Mr Buck called himself as a private pilot on his Instagram.
The horrific collision took place at around 12.45pm over the high mountain Maddalena Pass, on the Alpine border with Italy.
There were three people in total involved in the accident, which happened near a disused gun battery by the village of Val d’Oronaye
‘There were two British citizens on board, one aged 18 and the other 37,’ said an investigating source.
‘The pilot of the second aircraft was also British and managed to land nearby, and is still alive,’ the source added, saying the crash scene was at 2775m (9104ft) altitude.
There was only a pilot aboard the second plane, which crashed near a disused gun battery by the village of Val d’Oronaye.
The source said that the surviving pilot was said to be ‘in good health, and not badly injured at all’. No other details about any of the victims have yet been released.
Both planes, which were registered in England, had taken off from the Barcelonnette Saint-Pons aerodrome nearby.
The crashed plane in which two people died was identified locally as one belonging to Purple Aviation, a British company based at Eashott Airfield in Northumberland
Rescue helicopters were immediately scrambled to the scene, along with fire fighters and police units.
The investigation to determine the causes of the accident was entrusted to the air transport research section of the local military police.
One crashed plane belonged to Purple Aviation, a British company based at Eashott Airfield in Northumberland.
The letters G-SJES were clearly identifiable on the wreckage, along with some of the Purple Aviation logo.
It said that the expedition was not organised by Purple Aviation but the team included two of its company directors, Richard Pike and Sam Woodgate.
The firm said that the expedition’s film footage has been handed over to the French authorities investigating the incident.
Olivier Jacob, prefect of Alpes de Haute Provence, said: “Today, on Wednesday July 24 2019, two leisure aircraft registered in England which took off at Saint-Pons airport crashed in a valley near Larche, to the south of Tete de Viraysse, with a person on board the first aircraft and two people on board the second.
“The pilot of the first plane is lightly injured.
“The two people who were found in the second craft are dead. The victims are British nationals, aged 18 and 37.”
Mr Jacob said French emergency services – including mountain police, a police helicopter, three ambulances and 22 fire crew – attended the scene.