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Company says debris found could be missing plane

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – The Latest on missing medical transport plane in Alaska (all times local):

1 p.m.

Officials with a medical flight company that owns a missing air ambulance in Alaska say aircraft debris found at the search site strongly indicates that it came from their plane.

The Coast Guard says it has not been able to confirm that the aircraft wing part found Wednesday and other debris found is from the twin-engine King Air 200 plane that disappeared with three people on board Tuesday. The plane was on its way to pick up a patient in the tiny community of Kake.

The debris was found about 22 miles (35 kilometers) west of Kake near the last known position of the plane.

Randy Lyman with Guardian Flight said in a statement Thursday that while the search is continuing, the company is “resigned to accept that the aircraft was ours,” referring to the debris.

The company says those on board the missing plane are the pilot, 63-year-old Patrick Coyle, the flight nurse, 30-year-old Stacie Rae Morse, and the flight paramedic, 43-year-old Margaret Langston. The company earlier said Langston’s last name was Allen, but Lyman said Thursday she was recently married and her last name is now Langston.

The company says all are based in Juneau.

This report corrects Margaret Langston’s last name.

10:55 a.m.

Authorities in Alaska say an aircraft wing part has been found in the sea near the last known position of a medical transport plane that went missing with three people on board.

Searchers on Thursday focused on the area where the wing part was found Wednesday in water near Admiralty Island in southeastern Alaska.

The Coast Guard says additional aircraft debris was found later in the same area.

The Coast Guard says it has not confirmed that the debris came from the missing King Air 200 plane operated by the Guardian Flight medical transportation company.

The twin-engine plane took off from Anchorage Tuesday and was expected to land in the tiny community of Kake to pick up a patient but never arrived. Kake is 22 miles (35-kilometers) from the search site.

A pilot, a nurse and a paramedic were aboard.

This report corrects that the Coast Guard has not confirmed airplane debris came from the missing plane.

AP-WF-01-31-19 2235GMT


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