An area physician on the leading edge of orthopedic procedures was killed in a plane crash last week.

Clint Hill, 49, died Thursday night when his single-engine Cessna plane crashed just a few miles from the Barkley Regional Airport on its final approach. He was the sole person in the aircraft.

Hill was a nationally recognized surgeon with the Orthopaedic Institute of Western Kentucky, of which he was among the founding group of doctors in 2009. Raised in Tennessee, he was an Army National Guard veteran and worked for a few years as a NASCAR pit crew member.

Greg Thompson, CEO of the Orthopaedic Institute, said Hill was coming back from a pheasant hunting expedition in South Dakota when his plane crashed.

McCracken County Sheriff's Department, the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board investigated the crash. No cause had been released at press time.