Draining pond next step in search for plane crash victim
EPHRATAH Authorities plan to drain the Garoga reservoir pond in their search for Frank Amerosa, the third victim of Friday’s plane crash.
“We’ve been in touch with the power company and they’re in the process of draining the pond,” said Fulton County Sheriff Thomas Lorey.
A small twin-engine aircraft piloted by John Campbell, 70, of Stamford Conn., went down near the hamlet of Rockwood between 5 and 5:30 Friday evening.
It was an Angel Flight, set up by a nonprofit organization to get Frank, 64, and his wife Evelyn, 58, from Frank’s brain cancer treatment in Boston back to their home in Utica.
In the days since the incident, more than 100 volunteers from the Rockwood–Garoga–Lassellsville Fire Company and nearly a dozen other agencies have combed the area, recovering the bodies of both Campbell and Evelyn Amerosa. Both were killed on impact.
Frank Amerosa is still missing and presumed dead.
The ruined fuselage of the aircraft, a Piper PA 34, was pulled out of the Garoga reservoir Tuesday with a crane, but the third victim was not inside.
The dam that created the pond is run by Brookfield Power Corp. through National Grid.
Though the pond is small and already has been explored by divers, Lorey hopes it will hold the final set of remains.
Wreckage from the aircraft will be transported to a facility in Delaware and examined by National Transportation Safety Board forensic engineers to determine the cause of Friday’s crash.
“That investigation will probably take a year to finish,” Lorey said, adding that hopefully the search for Frank Amerosa will not take as long. Even while the pond is drained, Lorey said volunteers are still searching the woods.