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  Former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe and his son survives plane crash in Alaska

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Author Topic:   Former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe and his son survives plane crash in Alaska
Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-10-2010 09:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
UPDATE: Former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe and his son survived the crash. For details, click here.

Former NASA Administrator on plane that crashed in Alaska

NASA Watch is reporting that former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe was aboard a plane that crashed in Alaska. From NASA Watch editor Keith Cowing:

I have confirmed that former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe was aboard the plane with one of his sons. I am awaiting updates.
The Associated Press reports on the crash:
Alaska National Guard spokesman Maj. Guy Hayes said there are possible fatalities. A National Transportation Safety Board investigative team has been dispatched from Washington, D.C., and was expected on the ground Tuesday morning.

Hayes said the Guard was called to the area about 20 miles north of Dillingham at about 7 p.m. Monday after a passing aircraft saw the downed plane. But severe weather has hampered search and rescue efforts...

The aircraft is a 1957 DeHavilland DHC-3 Otter registered to Anchorage-based communications company GCI, the Federal Aviation Administration told the Anchorage Daily News. A woman at the Regional Operations Center told The Associated Press all further information was pending notification of next of kin.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-10-2010 09:24 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
MSNBC offers more details in its report:
A private plane carrying eight people, among them the former head of NASA Sean O'Keefe and possibly ex-Senator Ted Stevens, crashed in southwest Alaska on Monday night, sources and officials said on Tuesday.

O'Keefe, the CEO of aerospace firm EADS North America and former U.S. navy secretary, was flying on the plane, according to an EADS spokesman.

...Half of those aboard the plane were killed in the crash Monday night, a source told Reuters, which reported rescuers were having trouble reaching the site because of bad weather.

garymilgrom
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posted 08-10-2010 10:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This is very sad news for many. I am pleased that Sean and his son survived.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-10-2010 10:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
CNN reports on the FAA's initial findings:
At least five people died in the crash of a private aircraft in Alaska Monday night, the Federal Aviation Administration said in a preliminary report.

Agency reports said eight or nine people were on the plane, which crashed near the the town of Dillingham.

Alaska's FAA office said two survivors had serious injuries and two had minor injuries.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-10-2010 11:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
EADS release
EADS North America statement on the aircraft accident involving its Chief Executive Officer

"Sean O'Keefe, EADS North America's CEO, was a passenger on a private aircraft that crashed in Alaska last night."

"Local authorities are reporting that there are survivors and a rescue operation is underway."

"No other details are available at this time," said Guy Hicks, EADS North America spokesperson.

Louisiana State University release
Statement from Chancellor Michael Martin Regarding Former Chancellor Sean O'Keefe

The LSU community is deeply concerned about Sean and his family at this difficult time of uncertainty. Sean is a valued member of the LSU family and our thoughts and prayers are with him. We also offer our prayers to everyone affected by this tragedy.

NavySpaceFan
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posted 08-10-2010 12:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for NavySpaceFan   Click Here to Email NavySpaceFan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My thoughts for all involved as well. Years before he was NASA Administrator, Mr. O'Keefe was Secretary of the Navy, appointed just after the Tailhook scandal broke. He was the right man at the right time.

Fezman92
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posted 08-10-2010 12:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Fezman92   Click Here to Email Fezman92     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My thoughts and prayers are with all the families

StarDome
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posted 08-10-2010 01:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for StarDome   Click Here to Email StarDome     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Fezman92:
My thoughts and prayers are with all the families

Here here

nasamad
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posted 08-10-2010 01:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for nasamad   Click Here to Email nasamad     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My thoughts are with the families of all of the victims and the survivors.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-10-2010 01:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA Watch cites a family source that O'Keefe and his son survived:
According to a family source both Sean O'Keefe and his son Kevin survived the plane crash but they are both rather banged up.
Reuters cites an unnamed EADS executive:
The chief executive of European aerospace giant EADS' North American unit, Sean O'Keefe, survived a plane crash in southwestern Alaska, a source briefed on the matter said on Tuesday.
MSNBC (NBC) News) quotes sources close to the family:
Nine people were on board, including Stevens and former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe and his son Kevin, officials said. Sources close to the family told NBC News that Sean O'Keefe suffered a broken pelvis and other bones and was expected to survive, as was his son.
EADS release
EADS North America statement regarding Alaska aircraft accident

EADS North America has been informed that company Chief Executive Officer Sean O'Keefe survived the Alaska aircraft accident that tragically took the lives of five individuals. Chairman Ralph D. Crosby, Jr. issued the following statement:

"It was with a great sense of relief and gratitude that we learned that Sean, and his son, Kevin, survived the aircraft crash in Alaska. We extend our deepest sympathy to the families of those less fortunate in this terrible accident.

"We owe a debt of gratitude for the heroic efforts of the members of the rescue crew and others who rushed to the scene. We look forward to Sean's full recovery and his rapid return to EADS North America."

NASA release
NASA Administrator Charles Bolden Issues Statement On The Death Of Former Senator Ted Stevens And Monday's Plane Crash In Alaska

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden issued the following statement Tuesday about the plane crash in Alaska that killed former U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens and injured former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe and his son, Kevin:

"We at NASA are deeply saddened by today's news that former U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens and others were killed in a plane crash in Alaska that also injured former NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe and his son, Kevin.

As a long-time supporter of NASA, Sen. Stevens made lasting contributions to our agency and our country. We at NASA mourn his loss and send our deepest condolences to his family, as well as the families and friends of all who perished in the accident.

We also send our best wishes for a speedy recovery to Sean, Kevin, and other survivors of the crash. Our thoughts and prayers are with them and their families."

cddfspace
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posted 08-10-2010 01:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for cddfspace   Click Here to Email cddfspace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Looks like Senator Stevens did not survive.

jasonelam
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posted 08-10-2010 02:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jasonelam   Click Here to Email jasonelam     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My thoughts and prayers to all those involved.

Jay Chladek
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posted 08-10-2010 02:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Even if they are alive it is far from over. They were without proper medical care for awhile and the terrain and weather conditions hampered efforts to get to them. So it is likely going to be a long road of recovery. But, as tragic as this crash was, it is nice to hear Sean and most importantly his son (no father should ever have to bury a son or daughter) are apparently alive still.

AeroSPACE
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posted 08-10-2010 03:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for AeroSPACE   Click Here to Email AeroSPACE     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
According to a close personal friend of Sean's he has a broken pelvis and is doing well. His son is still being evaluated, but is okay.

buckeyecal
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posted 08-10-2010 05:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for buckeyecal   Click Here to Email buckeyecal     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My prayers to everyone involved as well -- it's been rough up here in Alaska lately... first the crash at Elmendorf Air Show, now this. Hugs and prayers for all the families -- God be with you all.

ea757grrl
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posted 08-10-2010 06:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ea757grrl   Click Here to Email ea757grrl     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A story that hit too close for two reasons, NASA and Alaska. As awful as any plane crash is in and of itself, losing Sen. Stevens was a particular jolt, but I did get some relief when I heard about the O'Keefes.

Condolences to the families of all those who didn't make it, and best wishes to all the survivors.

Mike Z
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posted 08-10-2010 06:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike Z   Click Here to Email Mike Z     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I watched CNN all day. I was so relieved to hear that Mr. O'Keefe and his son survived the crash! I am really sorry about the loss of Senator Stevens and the others who perished in the accident. Especially since Ted Stevens survived a jet crash where he lost his first wife. My prayers go out to all who were one the plane and the to the rescue people.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-10-2010 07:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Associated Press:
Authorities have released the names of the passengers on the plane that killed former Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens.

Alaska State Troopers identified the victims as Stevens; pilot Theron "Terry" Smith, 62, of Eagle River; William "Bill" Phillips, Sr., no age or hometown given; Dana Tindall, 48, of Anchorage; and Corey Tindall, 16, of Anchorage.

Four survivors were taken to Providence Hospital in Anchorage with "varying degrees of injuries." They include former NASA chief Sean O'Keefe and his teenage son. The other survivors are William "Willy" Phillips, Jr., 13, no hometown given; and Jim Morhard, of Alexandria, Va.

Playalinda
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posted 08-10-2010 09:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Playalinda   Click Here to Email Playalinda     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens, one life, two plane crashes, pretty amazing. What is the odds to be in two plane crashes in one lifetime?

Rob Joyner
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posted 08-10-2010 09:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rob Joyner   Click Here to Email Rob Joyner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I thought the same thing. Prayers for all and their families.

spaceman1953
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posted 08-10-2010 09:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaceman1953   Click Here to Email spaceman1953     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Of course, all of us are praying for all involved and their families.

For Administrator O'Keefe and his son, we are particularly grateful that they survived... like any former NASA person, you all got us to the Moon and beyond and give us a great diversion to all our problems in life.

Mike Z
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posted 08-10-2010 09:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike Z   Click Here to Email Mike Z     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
We watched History Detectives last night and one of the people they were recearching was a tail gunner in a B-17 Flying Fortress and was shot down and ended up in a POW camp. They found his son only to find out he died at age 66 in an airplane crash. He did art work while prisoner to keep sane.

dss65
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posted 08-10-2010 09:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dss65   Click Here to Email dss65     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by jasonelam:
My thoughts and prayers to all those involved.
Add me to this. What a tragedy.

Jay Chladek
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posted 08-11-2010 05:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Some sad news with those who died in the crash. William Phillips Sr. was the father of his 13 year old son who survived. The Tindalls were mother and son. So two families are getting a bad shake up right now.

As for the odds of being in two plane crashes, in Alaska the chances are a little higher then anywhere else since the only way to get to many places in the state is by plane. That being said, the odds of slipping in a shower and ending up dead are probably higher. Besides, if you love to fly, you stick with it or keep finding ways to do it (even as a passenger).

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-11-2010 07:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
US News & World Report has an update on Sean and Kevin O'Keefe's condition, which includes a statement issued today by family spokesman Paul Pastorek, Louisiana's superintendent of education:
Inquiries, concern and good wishes regarding the well-being of Sean O'Keefe and his son, Kevin, have been pouring into my office from around the state and country. Therefore, acting as spokesperson on behalf of Sean O'Keefe and his family, I would like to issue the following statement:

"During this time of tragedy, our heartfelt thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Senator Ted Stevens. His passing is a profound loss to Sean, both personally and professionally, as well as to the O'Keefe family.

We will remember him for his long-standing commitment and service to our country and the loving example he set as a husband, a father and a friend. Sean truly admired the work of Senator Stevens on behalf of the people of Alaska and the United States.

Sean, Kevin and our family also mourn the loss of their other travel companions, and we send their loved ones our most sincere condolences.

As for Sean and Kevin, their injuries do not appear to be life-threatening and we are confident they will have a full recovery. While we are deeply saddened by the losses of Sean's friends and colleagues, we are grateful Sean and Kevin will have the opportunity to return home to our family.

[Wife] Laura is holding up well. She has visited with both Sean and Kevin at the hospital, was heartened by seeing them and has communicated with both of them. Laura is very encouraged by the excellent medical attention they are getting and is particularly grateful for the valiant and heroic efforts that were made to rescue the passengers. She appreciates the outpouring of support that they have received and asks that we continue praying for all those who have been affected by this tragedy.

via the Sean and Kevin O'Keefe Recovery Facebook page.

Lou Chinal
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posted 08-15-2010 04:23 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Lou Chinal   Click Here to Email Lou Chinal     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I meet Sean O'Keefe on the night of July 19th in the National Air and Space Museum in Washington - I still remember the handshake.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-16-2010 10:36 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
National Transportation Safety Board release
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has released three photographs of the aircraft accident site near Aleknagik, Alaska that took the lives of 5 of the 9 persons aboard.

The photos, which were taken by NTSB investigators, are included below.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-19-2010 09:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Statement issued by Paul Pastorek on behalf of the O'Keefe family:
On Tuesday evening, August 17, 2010 at 6:00 p.m., Kevin O'Keefe was released from Providence Alaska Medical Center. Kevin wishes to thank everyone who helped him recover from the disaster that occurred just over one week ago.

"I cannot begin to express the depth of gratitude I have for the people who helped me survive and recover from the accident. Specifically, I want to thank the first responders who spent the night with me, my father, and my fellow passengers, and those who attended to us under extremely difficult circumstances, especially Doctor Dani."

"I'd also like to thank the courageous first responders who conducted the rescue operation from the mountainside; the first responders who brought us to Anchorage; the medical staff at Providence Alaska Medical Center; the Family Assistance Foundation personnel; and the personnel at General Communication, Inc.," Kevin O'Keefe said.

While this was a harrowing experience, Kevin is on his way to recovery because of the many people who have done so much to support him. Kevin has more work to do to fully recuperate, but his family is hopeful that he will have a swift and complete recovery.

"We are thankful for the outpouring of support that has come from all of those concerned with our well-being. Our family asks that everyone continue to support the loved ones of all of those who didn't survive the accident," Kevin said.

Kevin also wants to thank his fellow survivors who provided comfort throughout it all. Kevin asks for prayers, especially for his dad, Sean O'Keefe, CEO of EADS North America. Sean O'Keefe remains hospitalized, but is making steady progress toward recovery.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-19-2010 09:45 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Statement issued by Paul Pastorek on behalf of the O'Keefe family:
Sean decided that he wanted to tell his story fully and soon in order to express his heartfelt gratitude for the first responders, Coast Guard and National Guard personnel who helped him, his son Kevin, and the two others who survive the crash. He also wanted to use the opportunity to praise the public life of service and mourn the loss of his mentor, Sen. Stevens and the four others who died in the crash.

Sean, Kevin and Laura were interviewed by Ann Curry, NBC News. NBC Dateline will have a one hour program on the accident at 9 p.m. Oct. 22.

Prior to Dateline airing, Sean is scheduled to appear on NBC's Today Show at approximately 7:32 a.m. Friday and on CNBC.

Having told the story, Sean is looking forward to getting back in the saddle at EADS and turning his focus to the business challenges and opportunities ahead.

via the Sean and Kevin O'Keefe Recovery Facebook page

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-19-2010 09:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Reuters: Plane crash survivor O'Keefe back at work at EADS
Two and a half months after surviving a small plane crash that killed five people, Sean O'Keefe returned to work on Monday as the chief executive of the U.S. unit of European aerospace company EADS.

O'Keefe, still sporting a neck brace and protective cast on his foot, said in a Web posting that he was at "75 percent strength," but eager to get back to work...

"Still several hurdles to overcome, braces and casts to jettison, and weeks, if not months of therapy yet to accomplish," O'Keefe said on the website. "But getting back to work will surely help speed that process along!"

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-22-2010 09:03 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Prior to Dateline airing, Sean is scheduled to appear on NBC's Today Show at approximately 7:32 a.m. Friday and on CNBC.

ilbasso
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posted 11-23-2010 10:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A gripping account of the aftermath of the plane crash from the passengers' standpoints is in this weekend's Washington Post - advance copy is online.

All times are CT (US)

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