State police said Setauket helicopter pilot Arthur Charych, 73, died when he crashed near Storm King Mountain in the Town of Cornwall on Sunday afternoon. Credit: Mark Lieb/Rockland Video Productions

A Setauket helicopter pilot traveling alone died when he crashed near Storm King Mountain in the Town of Cornwall on Sunday afternoon, State Police said.

The pilot was Arthur Charych, 73, and the crash occurred near State Route 218, State Police said in a statement.

Storm King Mountain is a popular place to hike, and a couple only 10 minutes into their excursion said they heard the helicopter fly overhead, a series of loud booms and then the crash.

"It sounded like eight shotgun blasts went off at once," said Gavin Amacher of the Town of Wappinger, according to video provided to Newsday.

He and his companion were not quite sure what had happened until they came down to the bottom and spoke with other hikers.

"We didn't actually see the helicopter but … we damn well heard it and it was loud; it was echoing through the whole valley, it was pretty crazy," Amacher added.

"Honestly, it's pretty scary to think about; we heard like it fly overhead and then I heard it went down in the gully up there, it went down through the trees," he said, adding the white-and-yellow helicopter was only partly visible from the mountain top.

"It went down hard … the whole cabin was mangled."

Charych was aboard a 2007 Robinson R44 Rotocraft, the police said.

"This is an ongoing investigation," they added, releasing no additional details.

Relatives of Charych were not immediately available or declined to comment.

Cornwall is about 60 miles north of midtown Manhattan. State Route 218 parallels the Hudson River in Orange County.

NewsdayTV's Elisa DiStefano and Newsday food writer Marie Elena Martinez take a look at the hottest places to dine on Long Island this summer.  Credit: Randee Daddona; Newsday / A.J. Singh

A taste of summer on Long Island NewsdayTV's Elisa DiStefano and Newsday food writer Marie Elena Martinez take a look at the hottest places to dine on Long Island this summer. 

NewsdayTV's Elisa DiStefano and Newsday food writer Marie Elena Martinez take a look at the hottest places to dine on Long Island this summer.  Credit: Randee Daddona; Newsday / A.J. Singh

A taste of summer on Long Island NewsdayTV's Elisa DiStefano and Newsday food writer Marie Elena Martinez take a look at the hottest places to dine on Long Island this summer. 

Latest videos

YOU'VE BEEN SELECTED

FOR OUR BEST OFFER ONLY 25¢ for 5 months

Unlimited Digital Access.

cancel anytime.