The lone survivor of a fiery helicopter crash in New Mexico told authorities she was "watching her family burn" in a frantic 911 call placed in the immediate aftermath of the deadly incident.
Police said the rugged terrain and lack of access slowed down their response time.
Key Zimbabwe opposition leader Roy Bennett died Wednesday in a helicopter crash in a remote area in northeastern New Mexico, authorities said Thursday.
Despite being white, he spoke fluent Shona and won a devoted following of black Zimbabweans who referred to him as "Pachedu, ' meaning 'one of us" for his stance as a strong advocating for political change.
Bennett's wife, Heather, also died when the aircraft hurtled downward, just a few minutes after taking off from the airport in the small community of Raton. The other victims were identified as Bennett's wife, Heather Bennett, 55, of Colorado; pilot Jamie Coleman Dodd, 57, of Trinidad, Colorado; co-pilot Paul Cobb, 67, of Conroe, Texas, and Charles Ryland Burnett, 61, Houston.
"The MDC and the Zimbabwean community owe their gratitude to comrades such as Bennett whose huge contribution to the struggle against injustice, human rights violations and oppression can not go unsung".
Friends and family members confirmed that Mr Bennett and his wife had travelled to New Mexico to spend their holiday at Burnett's ranch.More news: May to meet Trump for talks at World Economic Forum
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Born in England, Burnett was an investor and philanthropist with links to a wide range of businesses and a love of entertaining friends extravagantly.
Both Cobb and Dodd had been experienced aviators who would have known better than to take unnecessary risks while operating the privately owned Huey helicopter.
Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Lynn Lunsford said the helicopter was a Huey UH-1.
The intended destination was the Emery Gap Ranch, a mountainous property near the Colorado-New Mexico border.
According to the reports, in Zimbabwe, Tendai Biti, a prominent opposition leader and a former finance minister, tweeted that the Bennett's "tragic passing" was "a blow to our struggle". An enraged Bennett charged the minister, who fell to the floor. David Coltart, an opposition figure, said the couple were "two of Zimbabwe's greatest patriots".
By Simbarashe Chikanza| The man who was the State Security Minister, Didymus Mutasa, says the late former MDC-T Treasurer General, Roy Bennett should be buried in Zimbabwe. He told of the mistreatment of fellow prisoners, some of whom he said had starved to death in their cells.
Bennett, 60, was listed as a resident of Colorado and South Africa.