The Natchitoches Regional Airport in Natchitoches features two runways. One is 5,100 feet long and designed to accommodate corporate jets. The other is 4,000 feet long, 100 feet wide, and handles most of the private and recreational aviation. On September 20, 1973, a chartered Beechcraft E18S was prepared for an evening flight. Pilot Robert Elliot was ferrying touring rock singer Jim Croce and accompanying performer Maurice (Maury) Muehleisen and comedian George Stevens to Sherman, Texas, for another performance. Also on board were road manager Dennis Rast and publicist Kenny Cortese. The craft failed to gain sufficient altitude and struck a tree at the end of the runway. All on board perished in the crash.