Debris from a plane was located in the water Wednesday (1/30/19), as the U.S. Coast Guard and others continued to search for a medevac aircraft that went missing Tuesday night on a flight from Anchorage to Kake.
Late Wednesday night, Guardian Flight released the names of its missing crew.
63-year old pilot Patrick Coyle, 30-year old flight nurse Stacie Rae Morse, and 43-year-old flight paramedic Margaret Langston were aboard the twin-engine Beechcraft King Air 200 plane owned by Guardian Flight. All of the crew members are based in Juneau. The plane was traveling from Anchorage and due to arrive in Kake at 6:19 p.m. Tuesday evening but did not.
The Coast Guard has been focusing their search on the last known position of the aircraft, an area of water 30 nautical miles by 20 nautical miles west of Kake. Chief Charly Hengen, public affairs specialist with the Coast Guard said the debris was found near that area.
“The Coast Guard and partner agencies and volunteers, they’re still continuing the search for that overdue aircraft near Kake,” Hengen said on Wednesday evening. “We did receive reports that debris from a plane was located in the water approximately 22 miles West of Kake. It’s located about the South tip of Admiralty Island in Chatham Straight. However the Coast Guard cannot confirm that the debris is from that aircraft.”
The Coast Guard says the electronic locating transmitter is not broadcasting for the plane.
The Petersburg-based Coast Guard cutter Anacapa and good Samaritan vessels started the search Tuesday night. On Wednesday, a Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Sitka and a National Guard H-60 helicopter from Juneau joined in. The Ketchikan-based Coast Guard cutter Bailey Barco was also headed to the scene. Also assisting are search and rescue teams from Kake and Petersburg, Alaska Marine Highway ferries and Alaska State Troopers.
Guardian Flight and other companies offer round-the-clock, emergency medical airlift service throughout Alaska for patients needing treatment at hospitals in larger cities.
Kake is an island community of about 600 people in the Southeast part of the state.