Victims identified in Fire Island plane crash

October 21, 2012 2:31:14 PM PDT
A small plane that crashed off the coast of Long Island Saturday, and the bodies of two men inside, have been pulled from the water.

Coast Guard Petty Officer Erik Swanson said the bodies and the plane were retrieved from the inlet shortly after 11 p.m. Saturday, about eight hours after the crash.

The aircraft went down around 3 p.m. in Moriches inlet, near the eastern end of Fire Island. After it crashed, it sunk in about 15 to 20 feet of water. Suffolk County police divers worked to reach the occupants for hours after the plane sank.

Suffolk County police on Sunday said the victims were 51-year-old Cyril McLavin, of Fresh Meadows in Queens, and 72-year-old Andrew Messana, from Bayside, Queens.

Medics had remained on the scene for hours after the crash in case the two survived, but they were submerged for hours and presumed dead because water had come into the cabin.

The Globe Swift aircraft departed Spadaro Airport, not far from where it crashed, earlier Saturday.

Good Samaritans on a nearby boat were first on the scene, and tried to keep the plane above water but tying a rope to it, but the aircraft sank.


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