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Kienholz named as deceased in Nakusp plane crash

RCMP file photo. Not the Nakusp plane crash.

Nelson's James Forrest Kienholz has been identified as the man killed in the small float plane crash near Nakusp last Wednesday.

Kienholz, 64, was longtime Leafs scorekeeper and an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed fishing and snowshoeing in the winter.

From the 1970s to 1990s Kienholz played goal and defence in the Western International and Kootenay Soccer Leagues for the Nelson Savoy and Royals teams.

It was then Kienholz began scorekeeping for the Nelson Maple Leafs of the Western International Hockey League, the Junior Leafs in the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League and Rocky Mountain Junior A Hockey League.

The plane Kienholz was in crashed into upper Arrow Lake about 500 metres off the shore around 8:30 a.m last Wednesday. The plane was en route to take Keinholz and the 79-year-old pilot, also from Nelson on a fishing trip to Fortress Lake on the Alberta/B.C. border near Jasper.

Kienholz didn't have a fishing license so the pilot decided to land near Nakusp to purchase one. The lake near the site of the crash was like glass which makes it difficult for float planes to land. The plane hit the water before the pilot expected to touch down and subsequently flipped.

The pilot got out with only minor injuries but Kienholz was unable to get out of the plane despite several attempts by the pilot to free him. He succumbed to injuries sustained in the crash.

A dive team was called in and asked for the assistance of local search-and-rescue services.

The Transportation and Safety Board, B.C. Coroner's Service and RCMP are  continuing their investigation.  Pilot error during the attempted landing of the aircraft on the lake is believed to be a contributing factor, said RCMP Staff Sergeant Dan Seibel, operations N.C.O. of the Kootenay Boundary Regional Detachment.