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The planes were built from 1963 until 1972, and were popular with flight schools because of their fuel efficiency and relatively inexpensive price tags, according to the International Comanche Society, an enthusiasts’ group.

Jordan Smith’s father is an Alabama state trooper and member of the Alabama National Guard who is currently serving in Afghanistan.

Associated Press writers Jeff Martin and Phillip Lucas in Atlanta and AP researcher Judith Ausuebel in New York contributed to this report.