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Wife of pilot killed in 2015 crash near Bloomington files lawsuit

The wife of a pilot who died in a 2015 plane crash near downstate Bloomington has filed a lawsuit against five companies allegedly involved in the maintenance, testing repair and/or manufacture of parts for the plane before it crashed.

The 22-count suit was filed by Ami Hileman on Wednesday in Cook County Circuit Court and seeks unspecified damages from Synergy Flight Center; G&N Aircraft; Continental Motors, Inc; RAM Aircraft; and Aircraft Propeller Service, according to court documents.

Ami Hileman’s husband, Thomas, was one of seven people killed when the Cessna 414A he was piloting crashed about 3:15 a.m. April 7, 2015 in a field near Route 9 and McClean County Road, according to court documents and the McLean County sheriff’s office.

The cause of the crash was due to a failure of the plane’s left engine and turbo charger, according to court documents. Further, the pilot was not able to “feather” the Cessna’s left engine propeller, contributing to the crash.

The plane’s left engine, built by Continental Motors, was installed in 2008 by RAM Aircraft, the suit said. Aircraft Propeller Service performed maintenance and repairs in 2010 to the engine’s left propeller. The engine was serviced by Synergy Flight Center and G&N Aircraft at various times in 2013 and 2014.

The suit claims negligence on the part of each company and accuses each of breach of warranties.

Representatives of the companies named in the suit did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday evening.