The pilot of a plane that crashed in a Ralls County soybean field on in the early hours of July 27 appeared to be headed back to the airport in Mexico when his aircraft plunged nose-first to ground, killing both he and his wife, reports the National Transportation Safety Board.

The pilot of a plane that crashed in a Ralls County soybean field on in the early hours of July 27 appeared to be headed back to the airport in Mexico when his aircraft plunged nose-first to ground, killing both he and his wife, reports the National Transportation Safety Board.

Bobby Faulkner, 41, and Shannon Faulkner, 41, of Greenwood, Ark., died in the crash. Authorities said that Bobby Faulkner was the pilot of the aircraft. Their plane crashed in a field located south of Route D and about 400 yards west of Prairieview Road.

In a preliminary report filed on Friday, investigators for the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said that the Faulkners took off from Mexico Airport at about 4 a.m. on July 27, 2017 in a Zenith CH 701SP aircraft, and crashed about 15 minutes later, about five miles south of Perry and 15 miles from the Mexico Airport.

“Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The personal flight was being conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 without a flight plan. The pilot and passenger on board the airplane were fatally injured,” wrote investigators. Faulkner was not instrument rated, said investigators.

The NTSB said that couple had stopped in Mexico while en route to the annual air show at Oshkosh, Wis. Investigators said interviewed the Mexico airport manager, who said the plane arrived in Mexico late on July 26, saying that the Faulkners wanted to get an early start the next morning so they could arrive in Oshkosh by 7 a.m. when its control tower opened.

“The manager said he believed the pilot and his wife camped that evening next to the airplane. When the manager arrived at the airport the next morning, the airplane was gone. The airplane was later reported missing and an ALNOT (Alert Notice) was issued that evening. The wreckage was located early the next morning,” wrote investigators.

The NTSB reports that the plane crashed nose first with the right-wing low, leaving a trail through the field and an impact crater where the fuselage came to rest.

“The debris path was aligned on a heading back towards Mexico. There is no record that the pilot obtained a weather briefing or filed a flight plan,” reported investigators.

The plane was reported missing on Thursday night. It was discovered close to midnight in the soybean field.