Officials say a prominent Murray businessman was killed Wednesday when the small plane he was flying crashed short of a runway and burst into flames during an emergency landing.

Washington County Deputy Coroner Len Benedict identified the pilot as Dan Hutson II.  The Paducah Sun reported that Hutson had earlier dropped off his wife, Cindy, in Lexington to be with their daughter, who was in labor.

FAA investigator John Cox says the plane was returning to Murray when the pilot reported problems. Cox says it landed just short of the runway about 1:30 p.m. while making the emergency landing at Lebanon-Springfield Airport.

Washington County Judge-Executive John A. Settles said the plane skidded off the landing strip and smashed through a fence row. The wreckage ended up in a field.  Benedict said an autopsy was planned.

The Hutson family is well known in the agricultural community.  Three generations operated Hutson Chemical Company, which later became Hutson Company Inc., for more than 75 years. Hutson operated his own company, Hutson Ag Company, a farming machinery company with locations in Kentucky and Tennessee.