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Cause of fatal crash still being probed

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POSTED: March 6, 2007 5:09 a.m.
Investigators are not sure what caused a Beechcraft 36 private passenger plane to fall from the sky Friday night into a Fort Stewart training area killing all four passengers on board.
“We’re not going to speculate at the time what may have happened to the craft,” NTSB Air Safety investigator Eric Alleyne said. “It may take six months to a year before we find out what caused the plane to crash.”
Alleyne told reporters gathered at the crash site, just off Highway 144 near a sniper training range, that at about 6:16 the pilot, who has been identified as Richard Love of Melbourne, Fla, requested an altitude decent from 13,000 feet to 1,100 feet.   
“As the plane began descending to 12,900 feet it just fell off the radar. There was no distress calls made.” Alleyne said the wreckage was strewn in an area estimated to be one mile wide.
A firefighter who was part of the rescue team and declined to be identified noted it looked as if the plane had just fallen about and said, “There was no fire when it hit the ground.”
It took the Fort Stewart rescue units several hours to find the wreckage which was located near midnight when a Coast Guard helicopter was was called in to hone in on the plane’s tracking device.
When rescue workers arrived, according to the firefighter, bodies were found in different locations of the area still strapped in their seats.
On Saturday afternoon, members of the media were allowed into the area and shown a heavily damaged cockpit and engine in one area, and a radar dome in another area. Yellow tape and a sign reading No. 1 was still visible indicating where one of the bodies was found.
The plane, according to Alleyne, was not flying over restricted air space although units on the installation are involved in training for the upcoming deployment to Iraq.
The plane was enroute from Titusville, Fla. to Anderson, S.C.
Officials identified Trevor Quinn, 29, Richard Love III, 32, of Melbourne, Michael Marasia, 34, of Satellite Beach, and Joshua Manso, 28, also of Melbourne, as those who were killed in the crash.

 
MELBOURNE, Fla. -- A local family is dealing with a double dose of tragedy after a fatal plane crash.
The plane took off from Titusville and went down in Georgia, killing four people from Central Florida, WESH 2 News reported.
The four friends were headed to South Carolina. Two of them planned to drive an RV back to Florida.
Instead, a Central Florida father is grieving the loss of a son for the second time in a year.
Trevor Quinn, 29, is one of four young men to die in this weekend's plane crash but he's also one of two sons from the Quinn family to die in barely a year.
“Cherish your children, I tell you. Losing one is bad enough, but losing two, I don’t know how I can handle it,” Ron Quinn said.
Quinn noted he has no doubt the pilot of the doomed plane, Richard Love, did as good a job as he could.
“I flew with him a dozen times,” Quinn said.
He was very confident in Love’s piloting abilities.
Just over the Georgia border, Quinn said the men’s plane developed severe icing on the wings. During their steep descent at 2,000 feet, both wings broke off. From that point, the four on board had no chance.
“There’s a lot of other parents that lost their children on that plane and I’m sure they’re feeling as bad as bad as I am,” Quinn said.
Trevor Quinn suffered his own tragedy last January when the older brother who was like a second father to him was killed. Richard Quinn’s car broke down along Interstate 95. He was walking to get help.
“He was struck by a minivan at 80-90 mph and just kept going and just left my son there to die,” Ron Quinn said.
Without gaining any kind of closure on his older son’s loss, Quinn said he feels as if he’s been blindsided again.
Quinn plans to hold a funeral ceremony on the beach for his son and have his remains cremated and put on the mantel right next to those of his older brother.
The National Transportation Safety Board has not yet made an official determination of why the plane crashed.

 

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