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Friday, April 7, 2017

DL Capt. Anne Marie Edmonson

~ IN MEMORY ~
DL Capt. Anne M. Edmonson
March 16, 1951 ~ April 1, 2017
News reports have now named the two pilots that lost their lives due to a tragic mid-air accident last Saturday .... retired Delta Air Lines pilot Captain Anne Marie Edmonson was 66 years of age at the time of her death.  Captain Edmonson joined Delta Air Lines 08-04-1995.  
News reports have been covering the accident and we will continue to post updates as more information is received.
but service arrangements are not yet known.
            Thank you,
                ~ Carol for the PCN 
2 career airline pilots identified as those killed in midair collision over Edgewater
Anne Edmonson and Gary Somerton were both airline pilots. They both shared their love of aviation with the young.
And during a tragic flight last Saturday they both died when their small planes collided while flying in formation over Edgewater.
The Edgewater Police Department on Thursday released their identities. Edmonson, 66, and Somerton, 57, both lived at the Spruce Creek Fly-In. They died in the crash as they flew near Interstate 95 and State Road 442, officials said. The planes left a quarter-mile-long trail of debris.
Edmonson and Somerton had been flying in formation about 8:45 a.m. with at least four other aircraft when the accident occurred, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. The Cessna in the crash was registered to Somerton, according to an NTSB database. The other plane was a Grumman Tiger.
Both Edmonson and Somerton had airline transport pilot ratings from the Federal Aviation Administration, according to the FAA website. Edmonson, though, had passed the mandatory retirement age of 65.
Somerton was a 737 pilot at United Airlines, according to Lynn O’Donnell, a friend. Officials from the airline did not return a phone message left Thursday.
Both Edmonson and Somerton were members of the EAA Chapter 288, which encompasses the Daytona Beach area, said chapter president Matt Simmons in a phone interview.
“They were both very active members of the chapter and it’s a loss for the community and for the chapter,” Simmons said.
Simmons declined to comment about the flight in which the two members perished. But he said it was not an EAA-sponsored flight.
“The accident had nothing to do with the chapter,” Simmons said.
The chapter has set up the Gary Somerton Memorial Fund to support programs encouraging youth to get involved in aviation, Simmons said.
“Gary was active in supporting youth programs through the EAA,” Simmons said.
Edmonson also had an interest in youth and aviation. She participated in a “Girls Fly” event on March 11 at the Ocala International Airport during Women in Aviation Week, according to a story from the Ocala Star-Banner. The event was designed to increase girls’ interest in aviation.
Edmonson told the girls and others during the event that she began flying when she was 38 and was a retired airline captain. Edmonson said she was a former captain at Delta Airlines and had flown a Boeing 767 for about four years during a 25-year-career which included flying cargo as well as international flights to South America, Europe and Asia, the Star-Banner reported.
Todd Gunther, an investigator with the NTSB, described during a press conference last week what witnesses saw of the two aviators’ last flight.
“According to witness statements, they viewed a formation flight that was in the area of I-95,” Gunther said. “As the aircraft were passing over I-95, according to witnesses, two of the aircraft came together and then the aircraft descended and impacted in the field behind me.”
The debris included large pieces of the aircraft. After hitting the ground, the Cessna 170 and the Grumman ended in up in two separate locations approximately 200 yards apart. Gunther said.
Gunther said it’s believed the planes took off from Spruce Creek Airport. 
2 pilots found dead after witness reports mid-air collision in Edgewater
Crash happened near I-95 south, crews say
Posted: 9:22 AM, April 01, 2017
EDGEWATER, Fla. - Two people are dead following a crash involving two planes in Edgewater Saturday morning, the Edgewater Fire Department said.
Officials said a witness reported seeing two small planes collided near I-95 south and mile marker 244 around 8:45 a.m.
Crews responded and found both planes in a wooded area west of I-95 south.
Edgewater fire officials said two pilots were killed in the crash. No other injuries were reported.
The Florida Highway Patrol said the incident did not cause any issues on I-95 in either direction.
The Volusia County Sheriff's Office was at the scene to assist Edgewater police with the crash.
Edgewater police said the investigation has been turned over to the National Transportation Safety Board. Edgewater fire officials said the investigation will be ongoing for several days, and that Edgewater police will be securing the scene as it continues.
A woman who said she witnessed the crash shared what she saw on social media.
"That was the scariest thing I have ever witnessed. Very bad," the woman wrote.
The woman said she was driving on I-95 and saw multiple planes flying together when she saw two of the planes collide.
"Watched two hit, debris flying everywhere, watch both go down right next to us," she wrote.
A spokeswoman for the Federal Aviation Administration provided News 6 with a statement following the crash.
"A Cessna 170 aircraft and Grumman American AA5B aircraft collided about three miles north-northwest of Massey Airpark in New Smyrna Beach, FL, at 9 a.m. today," the spokeswoman wrote. 
She said the FAA is at the scene to begin the investigation, and the NTSB will determine probable cause.
Officials with the NTSB held a press conference Sunday afternoon. 
During the conference, air safety investigator Tod Gunther said a witness reported seeing a formation flight pass over I-95 before the aircrafts collided. Two of the aircrafts collided, then landed in two separate locations, Gunther said.
He said the formation consisted of multiple planes that all came from Spruce Creek Airport.

Gunther said that as of right now, there is no indication that the aircrafts experienced power failure, in-flight fire or explosion, control failure, or structural failure before the impact, but the incident remains under investigation...........................

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Investigation report  :  
https://app.ntsb.gov/pdfgenerator/ReportGeneratorFile.ashx?EventID=20170401X94926&AKey=1&RType=Prelim&IType=FA

 

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