Steve Appleton, CEO of Micron, died in a plane crash in Boise

GlobalPost

Steve Appleton, CEO of Micron Technology, died in a plane crash on Friday in Boise, Idaho, CNN reported

Appleton, 51, was flying a Lancair fixed-wing single-engine plane that crashed this morning at Boise Airport, a spokeswoman for the airport told CNN. She could not confirm whether the accident took place at takeoff, landing or during flight.

Micron is the largest microchip manufacturer in the United States, and one of the largest in the world, according to CNET. The company halted the trading of Micron stocks upon news of Appleton's death, the Washington Post reported

"Steve's passion and energy left an indelible mark on Micron, the Idaho community and the technology industry at large," the company said in a statement

More from GlobalPost: Kurt Budke, Miranda Serna, Oklahoma State coaches, killed in plane crash

Appleton started his career at Micron in 1983 on the factory floor, the Post reported. In 1991, he was appointed chief operating officer, and moved up to the position of chairman, chief executive officer and president of the company in 1994. He leaves behind his wife and children, according to CNET. 

Appleton survived a previous crash in July 2004, when the stunt plane he was flying went down over an Idaho desert, CNN reported. He was known for his love of planes, as well as his athleticism: he played pro-tennis on for six months before his career at Micron.

Micron, a Fortune 500 company, is one of Idaho’s largest employers, with 26,100 reported employees in 2011, according to Hoovers

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