Hundreds of Juneau residents turnout Friday, Feb. 1, 2019, in 8-degree weather for a candlelight vigil at Mayor Bill Overstreet Park for the Guardian medical flight crew that went missing this week. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Hundreds of Juneau residents turnout Friday, Feb. 1, 2019, in 8-degree weather for a candlelight vigil at Mayor Bill Overstreet Park for the Guardian medical flight crew that went missing this week. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

Search team locates what is believed to be part of missing Guardian Flight medevac plane

Indications are the object is 600 feet underwater

A search team has made progress in their attempt to find a medevac plane that went missing in January with three Juneau residents aboard.

Guardian Flight, which operated the missing King Air 200 plane, made the announcement in a press release.

Sonar technology has indicated an object about the size of a plane that is 600 feet deep in Frederick Sound within one mile of the underwater beacon signals from the Cockpit Voice Recorder (black box).

[Community pays respect to those aboard missing plane]

“Our search team, utilizing side-scanning sonar technology, has located what might possibly turn out to be an unknown part of our missing aircraft in the extended search area,” said Guardian Flight Senior Vice President of Operations Randy Lyman, in a press release. “Indications are the object is possibly 25 feet long by 6 to 8 feet wide.”

The plane was en route to Kake from Anchorage on Tuesday night, Jan. 29, but never arrived to its destination. A huge search ensued, with the U.S. Coast Guard and other agencies looking for 63 hours before suspending their efforts Thursday night, Jan. 31.

Pilot Patrick Coyle, 63, Flight Nurse Stacie Morse, 30, and Flight Paramedic Margaret Langston, 43, were the three crew members on board. Morse was pregnant with a child she planned to name Delta Rae.

[Photos: Hundreds turn out for Guardian Flight vigil]

The next step is to relaunch a submersible Remotely Operated Vehicle, which will take a number of days to accomplish, Lyman said.

“We are hopeful that this might be a positive step in the process to recover our missing friends and return them to their families,” Lyman said.


• Contact reporter Mollie Barnes at mbarnes@juneauempire.com or 523-2228.


A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew flies over a piece of debris spotted by Alaska Wildlife Troopers while searching for three people aboard an overdue Guardian Life Flight aircraft 20-miles west of Kake, Alaska, Jan. 30, 2019. Coast Guard Cutters Anacapa and Bailey Barco, along with an Alaska Army National Guard, several search and rescue teams and good Samaritans began searching for the aircraft and three people aboard after it did not arrive as scheduled to Kake Jan. 29, 2019, to retrieve a patient for transport. (Photo courtesy of Alaska Wildlife Troopers)

A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew flies over a piece of debris spotted by Alaska Wildlife Troopers while searching for three people aboard an overdue Guardian Life Flight aircraft 20-miles west of Kake, Alaska, Jan. 30, 2019. Coast Guard Cutters Anacapa and Bailey Barco, along with an Alaska Army National Guard, several search and rescue teams and good Samaritans began searching for the aircraft and three people aboard after it did not arrive as scheduled to Kake Jan. 29, 2019, to retrieve a patient for transport. (Photo courtesy of Alaska Wildlife Troopers)

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