CANYONLANDS NATIONAL PARK (AP) A former Bureau of Reclamation commissioner and an Arizona man died after their plane crashed in Canyonlands National Park.
The San Juan County Sheriff's Office says John W. Keys III, 66, of Moab, and Gary Kramer, 49, of Scottsdale, Ariz., died when the plane crashed about 10:30 a.m. Friday in the park's Needles District.
Keys was flying the Cessna 172 on a scenic flight over Canyonlands when it went down.
Keys worked for the Bureau of Reclamation for nearly 40 years and once served as the Pacific Northwest regional director. When he retired from Reclamation in 2006, Interior Secretary Gale Norton praised him for his work in developing the Water 2025 Initiative intended to avoid future water crises in the West.
A friend, John Weisheit, says Keys was in the midst of a campaign for a seat on the Grand County Council.
The plane's wreckage was found Friday, and the bodies were recovered. The crash is under investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board.