An examination of the area surrounding the crash site of the aircraft Steve Fossett was flying revealed some small amounts of human remains which should be more than enough to identify those remains of Fossett through DNA testing.
The wreckage of N240R was located about 120 miles south of the ranch in Nevada from which Fossett departed in the Inyo National Forest. It appears the aircraft struck a mountain at about 10,100 feet above sea level leaving a debris field 150 feet wide and 400 feet in length. "It was a hard-impact crash, and he would've died instantly," said Jeff Page, emergency management coordinator for Lyon County, Nev.
California National Guard troops are heading to the area to retrieve the remains of the aircraft which will be air lifted out of the forest by Blackhawk helicopters and transported to a hangar where they will be examined to see if they can determine the cause of the crash.
According to Undersheriff Ralph Obenberger there were large storm clouds over the peaks around Mammoth Lakes on the day of the crash. Mr. Fossett took off alone from the Flying-M Ranch in Yerington, Nev., in a blue-and-white Bellanca Citabria Super Decathlon, a single-engine two-seater. The ranch is a retreat for wealthy anglers and fliers.
In a statement, Mr. Fossett’s wife, Peggy V. Fossett, thanked the searchers and the hiker who found his belongings. “The uncertainty surrounding my husband’s death over this past year has created a very difficult situation for me,” Mrs. Fossett said. “I hope now to be able to bring to closure a very painful chapter in my life.”
Until next time keep your wings straight and level Hersch!
Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth,
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds...and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of...wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there,
I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air.
Up, up, the long, delirious burning blue
I've topped the windswept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, nor even eagle flew.
And while with silent, lifting mind I've trod
The high untrespassed sanctity of space...
...put out my hand, and touched the face of God.
by John Gillespie Magee, Jr.