Micron CEO Dies In Plane Crash

Micron CEO Steve Appleton passed away Friday morning when the small plane he was flying crashed at an airport in Boise, Idaho. Micron, which manufactures semiconductors and flash memory, confirmed Appleton’s death in a press release that praised his “passion and energy.” Appleton was 51 at the time of his death.

According to an official from the Boise Airport, Appleton was flying a Lancair fixed wing single-engine plane that crashed at 8:58 AM local time. It was not immediately clear whether the crash occurred during takeoff, landing, or in the air. Officials from the Nasdaq composite stock index, where Micron stock is traded, halted trading of the shares on the news.

Appleton was a long-time amateur pilot and had survived a previous crash in July 2004 when a stunt plane he was flying went down over the Idaho desert. He was hired by Micron in 1983 and held several positions with the company during his tenure there. In 1991, Appleton was promoted to president and chief operating officer, and became the chairman, CEO and president in 1994. In 2007, he shed the title of president.