Crews continue search for crash victim

EPHRATAH – Crews continued to search today for the body of a third person from Friday night’s plane crash after making progress in draining a pond.

Officials are looking for the body of Frank Amerosa, who is presumed dead after the Angel Flight plane crashed.

The bodies of the other two people in the plane, Amerosa’s wife, Evelyn Amerosa, and pilot John Campbell, have been recovered.

Fulton County Sheriff Thomas Lorey said Wednesday the reservoir on the Garoga Creek was being drained, with 15 feet of water drained from 10 p.m. Tuesday to noon Wednesday. According to Lorey, the water was expected to be fully drained by late Wednesday.

Parts from the plane were on a flat-bed truck Wednesday. They eventually will be sent to authorities in Delaware to be analyzed. According to Lorey, roughly 80 percent of the plane has been found.

“We’re still hoping on finding the tail pieces,” Lorey said.

Lorey said more pieces of the plane could be in the reservoir.

Mark Souza, chief for the Rockwood-Garoga-Lassellsville Volunteer Fire Company, said this morning the search would continue today with state forest rangers searching the woods. Volunteers, who have helped with the search for the last few days, were not called in today.

“Basically, right now, the rangers are taking over the situation without the volunteers,” Souza said.

He said dive crews were searching the reservoir until 7 p.m. Wednesday. Souza said the crews were still waiting for the reservoir to drain completely.

Evelyn Amerosa, who worked at the Masonic Care Community in Utica, is being remembered by her co-workers.

“She was always involved with the residents,” said Kathy Contino-Turner, director of communications and marketing at MCC.

Contino-Turner said Amerosa spent a lot of time with the residents, dancing and talking with them and drawing them into the activities there.

“They called her a butterfly here,” Contino-Turner said. “She always fluttered from thing to thing.”

Amerosa was a long-term employee at MCC, entering her 20th year there.

Rescue workers have been scouring woods and the murky pond where the bulk of the aircraft was submerged. Wreckage from the crash was dispersed over a large area, with pieces of the plane and documents found as far as five miles away, authorities said.

The Piper PA 34 departed from Hanscom Field in Bedford, Mass., and was headed to Rome, N.Y., before it crashed just after 5 p.m. Friday, Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen said.

The plane did not issue a distress call before losing radar and radio contact, the NTSB said.