View Full Version : Prayers needed, tragic development

06-04-2007, 07:40 PM
A transplant team, here in Milwaukee to pick up a lung and transport back to Michigan went down in Lake Michigan today at 4pm.
The intended recipient is in critical condition as of this post
and the passengers of the plane are still missing..very tragic story developing, please keep them all in your prayers tonight.
here is the story so far.

MILWAUKEE -- A medical transport plane went down into Lake Michigan about 1 mile east of McKinley Marina at about 4 p.m. Monday.

The Milwaukee Fire Department said there were six people aboard. Lt. Lawrence Jenkins said there were two crew members and four passengers

Toy Air President Bob Paige the plane belonged to Toy Air based in Southfield, Mich. He also confirmed those on board were a part of the University of Michigan transplant team.

A Detroit television station confirmed that two surgeons and two perfusionists from University of Michigan were on their way back to perform a double lung transplant.

The nephew of either the pilot or co-pilot called WISN 12 News and said that his 60-year-old uncle, from Jackson, Mich., was on board. He said the family was informed of the crash.

Search organizers told 12 News reporter that they have identified human remains and are asking helicopters to back off.

Milwaukee's new fire chief, Douglas Holton, said they were still in search and rescue mode at 5:25 p.m. The Milwaukee medical examiner's office told Henry that it had an investigator on the boat.

Images: Plane Goes Down In Lake Michigan

Jenkins told Henry they found discoloration in the water and that is how they discovered the debris field.

WISN 12 News confirmed that it was a Cessna Citation aircraft that went down. It was leaving from Mitchell Field and was headed for Willow Run Airport near Detroit. It would normally have been a 42 minute flight.

The Federal Aviation Administration said it lost contact with the plane at about 4 p.m. It departed from Mitchell at 3:58 p.m. Shortly afterward, it made a distress call and said it was returning.

The airport closed down for 20 minutes

WISN 12 News' Shelby Croft talked to people at the Milwaukee Yacht Club and someone said they saw something go down and then saw an explosion.

Weather Watch 12 Chief Meteorologist Mark Baden said rain had been falling at the approximate time of the crash and there were winds coming out of the north at 20 mph.

Holton said the water temperature was 57 degrees, and the survivability length is 16 hours.

Milwaukee police had 10 divers in the water. The Milwaukee Fire Department had 32 divers at the scene. The Milwaukee County Sheriff's Department also had divers at the scene. The Coast Guard had two boats and one aircraft at the scene.

Holton said the conditions are favorable for successful diving.

The Coast Guard said it will remain on scene all night. Divers will stop at nightfall.

The NTSB is expected to arrive Tuesday morning.

The Victims

University of Michigan Health System identified the victims Monday night:

David Ashburn, M.D., a fellow (physician-in-training) in pediatric cardiothoracic surgery
Richard Chenault II, a transplant donation specialist with the U-M Transplant Program
Dennis Hoyes, 60, a Marlin air pilot
Richard Lapensee, a transplant donation specialist with the U-M Transplant Program
Bill Serra, a Marlin air pilot
Martinus (Martin) Spoor, M.D., a cardiac surgeon who had been on the U-M faculty since 2003

It said the families have all been notified.

"The thoughts of the entire University community are with the families of those involved this evening,” said Darrell A. Campbell, M.D., chief of staff of the U-M Hospitals & Health Centers and a transplant surgeon. "We vigilantly await the results of the Coast Guard’s search."

06-04-2007, 07:42 PM
Very tragic. Prayers said.

ang in NC
06-04-2007, 08:30 PM
I will pray for them, I wonder if the organs were in the plane?

06-04-2007, 09:37 PM
I will pray for them, I wonder if the organs were in the plane?

Yes, sadly they were, they had just picked up the organ, and five minutes into the flight they began to have trouble. They lost contact with Mitchell International Airport at about 4pm, and shortly after, people saw the plane go into Lake Michigan. It looks as though nobody survived the crash, it was reported that human remains were found, so they asked news helicopters to stay back.
Just a sad story all around.

06-05-2007, 04:15 AM
Very sad .. prayers said.

06-05-2007, 06:31 AM
Divers find human remains in medical plane crash

MILWAUKEE (AP) -- The Coast Guard says human remains have been recovered from Lake Michigan in the crash of a small plane.

Coast Guard Captain Bruce Jones says authorities think there are no survivors in the crash of the twin-engine Cessna into Lake Michigan Monday afternoon.

A University of Michigan medical team was returning to Ypsilanti with organs for a transplant operation when the twin-engine Cessna went down Monday.

A Coast Guard commander says the pilot issued a distress call shortly before four p-m after departing for Willow Run Airport.

The leased jet was carrying four members of the university's Survival Flight team and two pilots.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Jolie Rouge
06-05-2007, 01:19 PM
Medical plane crashes in Lake Michigan
By CARRIE ANTLFINGER, Associated Press Writer
56 minutes ago

MILWAUKEE - No one was believed to have survived the crash of a small plane that was carrying a six-member organ transplant team and their cargo of donor organs, authorities said Tuesday.

The team's lifesaving mission — carrying unspecified organs from Milwaukee for transplant to a patient in Michigan — was cut short when the Cessna Citation went down Monday night in 57-degree water shortly after the pilot signaled an emergency.

The pilot had reported a problem with its trim runaway system, said John Brannen, senior air safety investigator with the

National Transportation Safety Board. The system controls bank and pitch, but it wasn't clear what caused the problem. "We will piece together what we can of the wreckage," Brannen said.

Investigators also planned to look at the aircraft's maintenance records within the next few days.

Only small parts of the plane had been found so far. Human remains have been found but hadn't been identified.

Milwaukee County Medical Examiner Jeffrey Jentzen said he likely would have to use dental records and DNA to identify the victims. "A high-speed impact in water causes explosion-type injuries," he said.

Those on board were two surgeons and two donor specialists from the University of Michigan Health System and two pilots who regularly fly their transplant missions.

The patient who was to have received the transplant organs was in critical condition, the university said. Jay Campbell, executive director of the Wisconsin Donor Network, declined to say which hospital the team was working with, citing privacy regulations.

The president of the United Network for Organ Sharing, the national organization that coordinates organ transplants, issued a statement calling the transplant team "unsung heroes" even as she said privacy rules prevented the group from sharing information about the flight and transplant.

"Every day, thousands of professionals do their very best to ensure that the donation and transplantation process is successful," Dr. Sue V. McDiarmid said. "Because of their routine success, the public may not understand the risks they sometimes must take in recovering and transporting organs. They are unsung heroes, willing to take these risks for the purpose of saving lives."

The university identified those aboard the plane as Dr. Martinus "Martin" Spoor, a cardiac surgeon who had been on the faculty since 2003; Dr. David Ashburn, a physician-in-training in pediatric cardiothoracic surgery; Richard Chenault II, a transplant donation specialist with the university transplant program; Richard Lapensee, a transplant donation specialist with the university transplant program; and pilots Dennis Hoyes and Bill Serra.

The plane took off from General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee and was headed for Willow Run Airport near Detroit, a 42-minute flight,
Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Tony Molinaro said.

Just minutes after takeoff, the pilot declared an emergency and requested a return to Mitchell, Molinaro said. But the plane dropped off radar screens just after the pilot made that request and the Coast Guard was contacted.

Light rain was falling at the airport with wind of 12 mph, gusting to 22 mph, according to J.J. Wood, a National Weather Service meteorologist.

The plane is owned by Southfield, Mich.-based Toy Air Inc., which in turn is owned by Toyota dealer Bob Page. Messages seeking comment from Page were left Monday and Tuesday. The flight crew members worked for Marlin Air Inc., based at Willow Run Airport. A woman who answered the phone at Marlin Air declined comment Tuesday.

There were 55 accidents involving emergency medical services flights — those carrying patients or organs for transplant — between January 2002 and January 2005, according to the most recent National Transportation Safety Board study on the issue. The study found several safety problems, including less stringent requirements for EMS flights that did not carry patients.


Associated Press writers David Aguilar and Jim Irwin in Detroit, and M.L. Johnson and Emily Fredrix in Milwaukee contributed to this report.


06-05-2007, 01:32 PM
Thanks for the updates everyone, please keep the families in your prayers, thanks.