Dale Smith, San Jose Executive, Found Dead After Plane Crash

Four family members with Smith also dead
January 10, 2014 Updated: July 18, 2015

Dale Smith, an executive and co-founder of the San Jose-based SerialTek, was found dead on Friday night after a plane crash in backcountry Idaho.

The Valley County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement that the aircraft was found and that there are no survivors.

Smith was with his daughter Amber and son Daniel, along with Daniel’s wife Sheree and Amber’s fiance Jonathan Norton, reported the Idaho Statesman.

Smith was flying Daniel and Sheree to their home in Butte, Montana after a family gathering in eastern Oregon during Thanksgiving and the days after. Amber and Norton, students at BYU, were along for the ride.

The single-engine plane vanished on December 1 and authorities and volunteers, including Dellon Smith, Dale’s brother, have been searching ever since.. A strong storm on January 10 may delay recovery efforts, the sheriff’s office said. 

“Planes and helicopters are flying out there every day. Snowmobilers are all over up in here,” Valley County Sheriff’s Lt. Dan Smith told the Idaho Statesman earlier on Friday. “Everybody has been looking.”

Help was also given by volunteers online, who spent weeks poring over satellite and video images of the area where the plane went down.

Smith reported engine trouble and sought information about a backcountry landing strip where he hoped to put the plane down safely, reported AP.

Federal recording indicate that Smith obtained his pilot’s licence in 2005.

He founded SerialTek in 2007, and served as its president and chief technologist, according to his bio on the company’s website. Before that, he founded Data Transit, another tech company. He held “numerous patents in the field of test and analysis.”

The company develops hardware and software tools that help engineers and programmers analyze, generate, and modify the serial protocols used by the data storage industry.

Story developing; check back for updates

Follow Zachary on Twitter: @zackstieber