On Friday, September 19, 69-year-old Max John Mizejewski of Rancho Santa Margarita rented a Cessna 162 Skycatcher from Jacqueline Cochran Regional Airport in Thermal, California and took off for Borrego Springs. Mizejewski never returned from his trip, and on Saturday morning a Civil Air Patrol search aircraft found his crash site in the Anza-Borrego Desert.
The aircraft was found upside down on a hill in the area known as the Borrego Badlands, west of the Salton Sea. He planned a two hour roundtrip flight to Borrego Springs, and departed Thermal at 7:30 a.m. When he had not returned by 11 a.m., he was reported missing.
Radar records indicate that Mizejewski performed a touch-and-go at Borrego Springs and was on his way back to Thermal when his plane crashed. The Civil Air Patrol reported that the weather at the time of the crash was good, with light winds and clear skies.
Mizejewski, a California native, was a helicopter pilot in the Vietnam war. He had recently renewed his pilot’s license, and his wife said he flew about once per month since then. He is survived by his wife Rebeca, daughter Elizabeth, and son Max, as well as his sisters Manya Nichols and Suma Shaazmunda. Rebeca Mizejewski says that while the loss is devastating for the whole family, their one consolation is that Max died doing what he loved, flying aircraft.
The Arizona aviation accident lawyers at Curry, Pearson & Wooten would like to extend their deepest sympathies to the Mizejewski family and friends as they cope with their great loss.