NTSB: Pilot in Crash Only Recently Got License
Weldon Spring, Mo. – The pilot of a plane that crashed on an island in the Missouri River on Sunday only had his pilot's license for about three weeks. That's according to the National Transportation Safety Board, which is investigating the crash.
St. Charles County authorities say the dead include pilot Mark Kaplan and his wife Phyllis Kaplan. Both were 56 years old and from the St. Louis suburb of Chesterfield. Also killed were 57-year-old Ralph Supinski and his 58-year-old wife Carol Supinski, both of Bradenton, Fla.
The Supinskis used to live in St. Charles County; they were in town to attend their son's wedding.
The flight originated from Spirit of St. Louis Airport, and the Cessna was registered to Spirit Aviation. Airport officials say the group was returning to the airport from a day trip to Sikeston.
About 9:30 Sunday night, the airport tower lost contact with the plane, which circled the runway before crashing.