December 23, 2005

Final body found from Miami seaplane crash

MIAMI (Reuters) - A body plucked on Friday from the ocean
off Florida's Key Biscayne was that of a victim of the seaplane
crash earlier in the week off Miami Beach, authorities said.

The bodies of 19 of the 20 people on board the ill-fated
aircraft, including three infants and two pilots, were
recovered soon after the crash on Monday, according to the U.S.
Coast Guard.

The 20th body was swept out to sea, however. It was
discovered by a boater shortly before midday on Friday about
three nautical miles off Key Biscayne, the Coast Guard said in
a statement.

It did not identify the victim but said the Miami Dade
Medical Examiner's office had confirmed it was someone who was
aboard the 58-year-old Grumman G-73T Turbine Mallard when it
plowed into shallow waters near Miami's Art Deco District on

The seaplane crashed moments after taking off for the
Bahamian island of Bimini.

Federal investigators raised the wreckage of the
twin-engine plane from the seabed off Miami Beach on Wednesday
and said they had found "fatigue cracks" that might have caused
the aging aircraft to lose its right wing.

The medical examiner's office could not be reached for
immediate comment and spokesmen for Chalk's Ocean Airways,
which operated the aircraft, were unavailable.