Health director Loretta Fuddy dies in plane crash off Hawaii
- Loretta Fuddy named as victim in light aircraft crash
- Rescue crews alerted after second pilot spotted debris in the sea
By Daily Mail Reporter
PUBLISHED: 02:06 EST, 12 December 2013 | UPDATED: 05:36 EST, 12 December 2013
Victim: Health director Loretta Fuddy was named by government sources as the plane crash victim
Hawaii's health director has died after a light aircraft carrying nine people crashed in the sea off the island of Molokai on Wednesday.
Loretta Fuddy, who was on an annual visit to the the island, was named as the sole victim in the crash by state government sources.
One passenger was able to swim to shore and the others on board the Cessna Grand Caravan were rescued by helicopter and boat.
The Makani Kai Air plane, which was scheduled to fly to Honolulu at 3.15pm, went down at about 3.45pm, half a mile northwest of Kalaupapa peninsula, Maui Fire Department spokesman Lee Mainaga said.
Ms Fuddy had been booked on the flight along with the health department's deputy director Keith Yamamoto, a spokeswoman for the department said.
Two government sources later confirmed to Kitv that Ms Fuddy had died.
The 65-year-old, who had won awards for her work with children and social work, had been appointed as director in 2011.
Ms Fuddy and Mr Yamamoto had been on an annual visit to Kalaipapa, a former colony for leprosy sufferers.
The remote peninsula on the north side of Molokai still houses a settlement for patients with leprosy, which is run by the Health Department.
Three of the crash survivors were plucked from the sea by a Coast Guard helicopter and fire crews saved five others.
Crash: A Makani Kai Air plane was carrying nine people when it crashed in the sea
Remote: Radio and cell phone communications are poor in Molokai
No emergency calls were received from the pilot of the stricken aircraft, and the accident was called in by another pilot who had spotted debris in the sea, Khon 2 reported.
'Kalaupapa is a unique area and radio communication is kind of poor there, cell phone coverage, that kind of stuff. So right now, we have no information if any calls were made out,' Richard Schuman, owner of Makani Kai Air, said.
The pilot who reported the crash continued to fly around the crash site and relayed information to authorities to help guide them to the wreckage.
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