Updated: Pilot Dies When Small Plan Crashes Into Methuen Roof

Interior of Riverview Boulevard Condominium. (Photograph courtesy of Methuen Police.)

Interior of Riverview Boulevard Condominium. (Photograph courtesy of Methuen Police.)

Former Newburyport Mayor Alan Lavender, 73, has been formally identified as the pilot who died when his small plane crashed into the roof of a Methuen condominium building early Tuesday afternoon.

Lavender’s name was released by Essex County District Attorney Jonathan W. Blodgett’s office. He was the only occupant.

There were no other injuries, according to Massachusetts State Police. The crash took place around 1 p.m., Tuesday, at Prides Crossing Condominiums, 1 Riverview Boulevard.

The condominium is just across the Merrimack River from Lawrence Airport. Federal Aviation Administration, State Police detectives, Methuen Police and Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett are investigating.

Methuen Police and Fire arrived found a home-built, single-engine, propeller-driven airplane had crashed through the roof of building number 7. They also discovered the building was on fire. Firefighters were able to make an aggressive attack, putting out the fire and confining most of the damage to the attic and top floor of the complex, officials said.

Officials determined that the pilot was on his way to land at Lawrence Municipal Airport, where the plane is registered, when he crashed.

Massachusetts State Police, State Police Airwing, Lawrence Police and Fire Departments, Salem, N.H. Police and Fire Departments, along with the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army remain on scene. The Federal Aviation Administration is responding to the scene and will conduct an investigation into how the crash occurred.