Tributes paid to pilot killed in crash

·1-min read
Police tape (Joe Giddens/PA) (PA Archive)
Police tape (Joe Giddens/PA) (PA Archive)

The family of the pilot who died in a light aircraft crash have paid tribute to him.

Jonathan Mann, known as Joe, was flying the plane that crashed on agricultural land near the village of Buckland St Mary in Somerset on August 12.

Mr Mann, 69, and his passenger, artist Margaret Costa, 74, were pronounced dead at the scene.

Joe Mann was the pilot of a light aircraft which crashed in Somerset (Avon and Somerset Police/PA)
Joe Mann was the pilot of a light aircraft which crashed in Somerset (Avon and Somerset Police/PA)

“He was a great man and a talented pilot; the world feels a colder place without his warmth and good humour,” his family said in a statement.

“Joe leaves behind wife Diane four daughters, three grandsons and a baby granddaughter born in lockdown.

“All the family had been looking forward to making up for lost time together this year.

“In his lifetime he led campaigns securing fairer rights for blind and disabled workers, and was a great champion for the more vulnerable.

“He set a strong example in standing up for what he believed in and was a dearly loved pillar of the family.”

Mr Mann lived near Sidmouth in Devon while Ms Costa was also from the county.

Her family said she had specialised in “fore-edge” painting, which are hidden watercolours painted on the sides of the leaves of books.

“She was a much-loved mum and a nanny to four grandchildren.

“She was the foundation stone of the family and will be deeply missed by her family and friends,” they said.

Ms Costa’s family continued: “The world feels a less colourful place without her, but she blessed those she knew with many beautiful memories to remember her by.”

The crash is being investigated by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB).

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