VENICE, Florida — A Georgia man is dead and his 9-year-old daughter is in the hospital with critical injuries after they were hit by a small plane that made an emergency landing on a Florida Gulf Coast beach.
The Piper Cherokee crash-landed Sunday afternoon, losing a wheel, damaging a wind and smashing a propeller.
The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office identified the victims as 36-year-old Ommy Irizarry and his daughter Oceana.
Officials told the Sarasota Herald-Tribune the victims were either hit by the plane or its debris.
Irizarry died at the scene. His daughter was airlifted to All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg.
Officials say the plane was trying to land on Caspersen Beach after making a distress call to Venice Airport at 2:45 p.m. The beach is south of the airport.
According to BuzzFeed, Irizarry was celebrating his ninth wedding anniversary with his wife, Rebecca, and their children. Hours before the crash, he reportedly posted on Facebook about how much he loved his wife and couldn’t wait to see what the next 100 years have in store.
Man hit and killed by crashing plane hours after posting touching anniversary message to his wife on Facebook http://t.co/4vZhjzIIhH
— BuzzFeed (@BuzzFeed) July 28, 2014
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