Three dead when small plane crashes into home in northern Minnesota

Officials in the port city of Duluth, Minnesota, named the three people killed when a plane crash landed south of the international airport over the weekend.

Alyssa Schmidt, 32, Matthew Schmidt, 31, and pilot Tyler Fretland, 32, were confirmed dead in the crash around midnight Saturday in Hermantown. Duluth News Tribune reported.

They were named on Sunday by the city of Hermantown, where the aircraft they were flying crashed into a residence about 26 kilometers south of downtown Duluth and not far from the international airport.

“Both police and firefighters from neighboring agencies responded to the area and located the wreckage of a Cessna 172 plane on the 5100 block of Arrowhead Road.” said in a release.

“The plane hit the second floor of a house before coming to a stop in the backyard of the property. The two occupants of the house were not injured.”

An employee who spoke to NBC News said the owners of the damaged home were not injured, but “nearly” avoided being killed by the Cesssna 172, a four-seat single-engine plane.

Jason Hoffman told the tribune that he woke up “with a very loud explosion and my wife screaming” and that “the first thing I thought was that the furnace had exploded”.

Police and firefighters attended to the accident on Saturday night.

(NBC News)

He added: “I’m still not sure what to think. It doesn’t look real. We’re just lucky. The loss of life is heartbreaking. At the same time, we are grateful to get through it.”

The victims were a brother and sister who were traveling on the plane with a pilot. All three people were from Burnsville, a city south of Minneapolis, the city of Hermantown said.

Representative Pete Stauber, who represents the state’s 8th District, tweeted Sunday that he was praying for the victims’ families and thanked first responders.

“I am praying for the three victims and their families who tragically lost their lives in a plane crash in Hermantown. Fortunately, the owners of the house were not injured. Thanks to the Hermantown Police and Fire Departments and the surrounding volunteer firefighters for their quick response.”

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is responsible for investigating the accident.

By Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at