Mon, Jul 31, 2006
Search Scheduled To Resume At Dawn
An aircraft identified in media reports as an American Legend
Cub LSA, reportedly heading to NE Ohio from this year's 2006
AirVenture Fly-In, went down Sunday, in Lake Michigan.
The two-seat aircraft reportedly experienced some mode of
powerplant failure while flying over Lake Michigan and ditched
some three miles from land. The two occupants used the sinking
aircraft, temporarily, for floatation before the aircraft
ultimately sank in what was estimated as 30-60 feet of water.
The pilot of the aircraft was reportedly injured in the ditching
and was described as "not doing well" by the passenger when rescued
by authorities. The pilot went missing as his passenger searched
for additional flotation, prior to rescue. A search continued until
nightfall, and was reluctantly called off until daylight.
Chicago Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford reported,
"According to the survivor, the engine quit and the pilot did a
great job of landing on the water."
The Cub's passenger is identified only as a 49-year-old Texas
male while the pilot was reported to be in his 60s. The passenger
was rescued by a US Coast Guard Auxiliary boat about 1710 local
time, approximately 30 minutes after the aircraft was forced down.
John Laurie, the coxswain on board the rescue boat reported that
the passenger, "... was very upset. They were swimming together
heading towards the shore. I believe he was trying to assist him in
some other way."
According to FAA and LEO sources, the aircraft was enroute to
Gary, IN, after departing Oshkosh. The final destination was to an
unspecified airport near Cleveland, and had planned a refueling
stop in Gary. The FAA's Elizabeth Isham Cory confirmed that the
Gary/Chicago International Airport received a distress call from a
plane that reported its location as 11 miles northwest of Gary.
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