Army Medi-Vac Pilot &

San Bernardino County Sheriff Deputy

Plane Goes Down

Sheriff SB County 40 KING.jpg 

Editor E T Russell

Sunday afternoon, July 30, 2017____  According to information released by the  San Bernardino County Sheriff,  the Sheriff’s 40-King Helicopter Crew located the site of a downed single engine aircraft in the Sawmill Canyon area, southeast of Bear Mountain, at approximately 9:30 A.M.  The Sheriff’s Ground Recovery Team was activated to the rugged terrain, basically on the back-side, southern slope of the Sugarloaf community.


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Concern for the aircraft and occupants originated Saturday night when the Apple Valley Police were requested to respond to the Apple Valley Airport in search of a vehicle belonging to Brian White. The reporting party stated that pilot White and passenger Rebecca Raymond were to be returning from the Airport in Big Bear City and was overdue.  Authorities located the vehicle at the Apple Valley Airport and contacted the Aviation Division for assistance.  An aerial search began immediately, searching the area between the Big Bear City and Apple Valley airports. 

Sunday afternoon, when a flight crew member was hoisted to the wreckage, two persons; an adult male and female, were confirmed deceased. The female was identified as Rebecca Joan Raymond.  The male was identified as Brian White,  the pilot who rented the Cessna. The identification of the deceased was confirmed by the San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner.   

Raymond is a San Bernardino County Deputy Sheriff assigned to the Barstow Sheriff Station and, has been Deputy Sheriff since September of 2016. 

U.S. Army Medi-vac Pilot Brian White rented the single-engine Cessna 172 at the Apple Valley Airport, to bring his girlfriend, Rebecca Raymond to Big Bear Lake for the weekend. 

Brian White cleverly coordinated his plans of a surprise marriage proposal, including inviting her parents to be at the Big Bear Airport to witness the special occasion, Friday afternoon. To celebrate the couple’s meeting second anniversary the highlight event took place immediately upon departing the Cessna.  Brian knelt on the carpet runner and proposed to Rebecca. The thrilled Girlfriend said “Yes!” with parents, Mike and Christy Raymond joyfully approving!    

FAA and NTSB assisted the San Bernardino County Sheriff Aviation Division with the investigation.  The cause of the aircraft tragedy could not be determined and the investigation is ongoing.  

I, E T Russell, feel honored to have been present, Friday July 28th when the Cessna arrived and met with Mike and Christy Raymond, daughter Rebecca Raymond and Brian White.  Out of respect for the families and friends, I have chosen to delay with more information about this unfortunate calamity.

When the investigation results are released, the information will be posted here: