Tragic End In Buffalo

50 died in plane crash near Buffalo, NY
50 died in plane crash near Buffalo, NY

In one of the most deadly and tragic disasters in recent history, dozens of people lost their lives when a commuter plane crashed into a house in upstate New York late Thursday evening.  The crash killed all 45 passengers on-board the plane, four crew members, and one person on the ground.  This is the latest of recent incidents involving commuter airplanes and the second, but most severe one in just this year.

The Continental airlines flight 3407 crashed into the house, five miles outside of the city of Buffalo just after 10pm Thursday night.  Witness reported seeing and hearing the plane just moments before the crash.  Minutes later fire crews responded to the firestorm created by the impact of the plane into the house in Clarence Centre.  In the investigation immediately following, it isn’t clearly known what was the cause, but conditions in the area were icy and foggy, which could have been a contributing factor.

Family notifications of the victims are still being done, but one of those that died was known to a few people including myself and the president of the United States.  Beverly Eckhart, was on the plane when it went down.  She was the widow of another victim of disaster when her husband was killed when the airplane crashed into the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001.  Just last week Beverly and I attended a meeting in Washington, D.C. where President Obama met with several family members of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and victims of the bombing of the USS Cole.  Since 9/11 Beverly been an advocate for many of the victims of the terrorist attacks, essentially to her last days.

Not for nothin’, but just as Beverly’s husband’s death was used to help aid victims of terror and national security, her own death probably should be used for safer airline travel.  This is the third incident involving airline troubles in as many months, but due to the loss of life, likely the most catastrophic.

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