A month before his plane crashed into the Gulf of Mexico, Roy Halladay appeared in an advertisement for the ICON A5 alongside his wife, Brandy, who was hesitant about the so-called "jet ski with wings."
They had a playful back-and-forth about her fighting against it.
But that changed once she was in the sky.
Further coverage: Former MLB star Roy Halladay dead in plane crash in Pasco County
"I get it, I get it," she said. "This is amazing … Now that we’re going to have one I’m really excited."
The trickster plane cost $269,000. Only about 20 of the planes even exist. It’s meant as a beginner plane for new pilots -- people like Halladay, who got his pilot’s license shortly after retiring from baseball in 2013.
ICON planes start at $207,000 and are about 23 feet long. The plane is marketed as something novice pilots can learn how to fly safely and more easily than a traditional plane.
"It’s like what Apple did for computers, turning something pretty complex and making it actually easy to use," Derek Tam-Scott, ICON’s marketing director, told the Tampa Bay Times last year.
Investigators are still looking into exactly what sent Halladay crashing into the Gulf. A number of witnesses reported seeing the sport plane flying low before hitting the water.
It appears no flight plan had been filed and no mayday calls were made to air traffic controllers in Tampa, though confirming that could take several days, according to officials with the National Transportation Safety Board.
NTSB report details steep turns and dives preceding Roy Halladay’s fatal crash
Before he crashed, Roy Halladay flew within 75 feet of houses and skimmed the surface of the Gulf of Mexico, according to a report published Monday by the National Transportation Safety Board.
The report, which did not address the cause of the crash, described in detail the 17-minute flight on Nov. 7 that ended when the former Major League Baseball pitcher’s light sport aircraft dove into the water, killing him. Halladay’s Icon A5, a two-seat amphibious aircraft with foldable wings that allow it to be towed on roadways, had a data recorder that logged GPS and engine information and flight parameters, allowing the NTSB to assemble a comprehensive account of what preceded the crash.
Halladay took off from a lake near his home in Odessa about 11:47 a.m. and climbed to an altitude of 1,909 feet, the report said. He flew north for four miles before turning west. He flew for 10 miles toward the coast, descending so that by the time he crossed U.S. 19 he was about 600 feet in the air. Halladay kept descending, dropping to 36 feet over the water, and then turned south. He buzzed by Green Key Beach going 92 knots at an altitude of only 11 feet above the Gulf, the report said.
Halladay then performed a 360-degree turn and continued south, passing just 75 feet from homes in the Gulf Harbors South Beach neighborhood. The last data collected by the flight recorder put the plane at an altitude of 200 feet flying south at 87 knots.
Video recorded just before the accident showed the plane in a steep descending left turn, dropping to about 10 feet from the water, the report said. An unidentified witness told an NTSB investigator he then saw the plane climb to between 300 and 500 feet above the water before entering into a 45 degree nose-down dive toward the water. That’s when the plane hit the water a quarter-mile west of Ben Pilot Point near New Port Richey and flipped over its nose, the witness said