Two men from the Antelope Valley who were killed in the crash of a small experimental airplane in Santa Paula were identified Monday by Ventura County authorities.

Ted Dopler, 60, of Palmdale and Jody Smith, 58, of Lancaster suffered multiple blunt force injuries and their deaths were ruled accidental, according to the Ventura County Medical Examiner’s Office. Both men were pronounced dead at the scene in the 17000 block of South Mountain Road.

They were in a single-engine, home-built Vans RV6A that crashed around 2 p.m. Saturday near 12th Street. No one else was injured.

According to NBC4, Ted Dopler’s wife, Lori Dopler, said she was supposed to be on the flight piloted by her husband but stayed home at the last minute to take care of her mother.

The plane left from Rosamond Skypark Airport, according to the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office.

Lori Dopler said the airfield is less than 30 minutes from the Lancaster home she shared with her husband.

Investigators haven’t determined if the plane was headed for Santa Paul Airport or another location, according to sheriff’s spokesman Sgt. Eric Buschow.

Both the FAA and National Transportation Safety Board were investigating the crash.

Witnesses who saw the plane go down were urged to email the NTSB at

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