The pilot and two passengers were killed on the afternoon of May 3, 2016, when their Beech 35B Bonanza broke up and crashed in Syosset on Long Island, New York. The IFR flight originated in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and was en route to Robertson Field (4B8) in Plainville, Connecticut.

The pilot reported to New York controllers that he was on top and would have to descend through the undercast “partial panel” because of a “vacuum system failure.” He declared and emergency and asked for vectors to his destination. He was informed of airports closer to his position, but did not request a no-gyro ASR to JFK International or other nearby airports. Shortly after the aircraft began its descent, ATC lost radar contact. 

FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating.

To listen to an audio recording of the pilot’s radio exchange with ATC, click here.