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Plane Crashes Into NJ Highway, Killing All 5 Passengers

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By Ray Downs, Christian Post Reporter
December 20, 2011|2:47 pm

A single-engine plane carrying five passengers and a dog has crashed in New Jersey, killing all on board.

The victims aboard the plane include two directors of an investment banking firm, Jeffrey F. Buckalew, 45, and Rakesh Chawlam, 36, as well as Buckalew's wife and two children, reported The New York Times.

The plane crashed on an interstate highway, but New Jersey state troopers say no drivers were injured.

The plane took off from Teterboro Airport in Teterboro, N.J., approximately 20 miles west of New York City, and crashed just a few minutes later in Harding Township, N.J.

The plane was reportedly on its way to DeKalb Peachtree Airport near Atlanta.

According to a statement from Buckalew's firm, Greenhill & Company, he was an "an experienced pilot whose passion was flying."

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In the same statement, Robert F. Greenhill, the chairman of the firm, and Scott Bok, the chief executive officer, said jointly: "The firm is in deep mourning over the tragic and untimely death of two of its esteemed colleagues and members of Jeff’s family. Jeff was one of the first employees of Greenhill. He and Rakesh were extraordinary professionals who were highly respected by colleagues and clients alike. They will be sorely missed, and our sympathies go out to their families and friends."

According to CBS News, witnesses claim to have seen the plane tear apart while still in the air. A wing landed in a tree and a propeller was found in the woods. Debris was found as far as a half mile from the crash site.

The cause of the crash has yet to be determined and Federal Aviation Administration officials are investigating.

Greenhill & Company confirmed that Buckalew's wife, Corrine, and their two children, Jackson and Merriweather, were all on the plane.

 

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