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Breaking News

Family Survives Plane Crash on Beaver Island, Michigan

Aired February 9, 2001 - 11:34 a.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

LEON HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR: We've got some breaking news now on that story that we were talking about a few minutes ago about the plane that went missing on its flight from Chicago up to Beaver Island, Michigan.

We're joined now on the telephone by Sheriff George Lasater, he's at the Charlevoix Airport; he is the sheriff of Charlevoix County in Michigan.

And sheriff, can you tell us exactly what you've known -- what you've learned at this particular point about the fate of these six people, who were this plane?

SHERIFF GEORGE LASATER, CHARLEVOIX COUNTY, MICHIGAN: OK, sir. At approximately 10:31 this morning we were advised that a local charter aircraft pilot had observed the wreckage approximately 2 1/2 miles from the Beaver Island Airport near a bluff. Upon arriving at the scene, there were four survivors of that airplane crash; a mother and three children did survive. They have been taken to the Charlevoix hospital, where they are in good condition.

HARRIS: So the mother and the family did survive, and the pilot and his -- I guess, his assistant, did not survive, is that what you're saying?

LASATER: That's what we're being told from the scene.

HARRIS: Have you recovered their bodies?

LASATER: The crew has gone back to the scene; it's rather a difficult area to get into and out of, but they've gone back to the scene to recover the deceased.

HARRIS: And how far away is this area away from any habitations?

LASATER: OK; it's -- the island is quite wooded, about 90 percent wooded -- and they were approximately, maybe 5 to 6 miles from roadway. So they had to make entry with snowmobiles and ATVs.

HARRIS: And how far away is the plane wreckage from the airport?

LASATER: About 2 1/2 miles.

HARRIS: About 2 1/2 miles. Do you believe that the problem here was the weather last night?

LASATER: Well, the weather was rather poor on the island; there was low visibility at that time.

HARRIS: What kind of condition is the mother and her three children -- is the family right now -- are they in good health? What are their conditions?

LASATER: I just talked to the under-sheriff, who's at the hospital with them now, and he indicated that they are in good shape.

HARRIS: They are in good shape?

LASATER: Yes.

HARRIS: And have they been reunited with their father and husband, who...

LASATER: We're trying to get the father off the island now so he can be reunited with his family.

HARRIS: All right, well thank you very much; Sheriff George Lasater, Charlevoix County, Michigan updating us on the flight of that missing plane -- that twin-engine turboprop plane that went missing from -- on a flight from Midway Airport in Chicago to Beaver Island. And now have the word that that plane did crash near a bluff there on Beaver Island.

We'll keep you updated on this story as we get the developments.

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