SUNY Students Die in Pennsylvania Plane Crash

Three students were on the small plane, and two died

By Brynn Gingras
|  Friday, May 11, 2012  |  Updated 8:11 AM EDT
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Two students from State University of New York died in a small plane crash near an airport in northeastern Pennsylvania and a third escaped with minor injuries, a coroner said. Brynn Gingras reports.

Brynn Gingras

Two students from State University of New York died in a small plane crash near an airport in northeastern Pennsylvania and a third escaped with minor injuries, a coroner said. Brynn Gingras reports.

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Two students from State University of New York died in a small plane crash near an airport in northeastern Pennsylvania and a third escaped with minor injuries, a coroner said.

The pair who died in Wednesday night's crash are 34-year-old pilot Patrick Sheridan of Long Beach, N.Y., and 19-year-old passenger Casey Falconer of Garden City Park, N.Y.

Authorities identified the surviving passenger as 21-year-old Evan Kisseloff of Oceanside, N.Y. He was set to graduate Saturday. 

"Evan is doing OK, as well as can be under the circumstances," his father Alan Kisseloff told NBC 4 New York over the phone. "We're all very, very sad for what occurred."

He said his son has a fractured rib and some cuts, and is in shock after losing his friends in the crash.

Evan Kisseloff, his best friend Falconer and Sheridan were flying for leisure in Sheridan's propeller plane when it crashed into some trees shortly after taking off from from a northeastern Pennsylvania airport Wednesday night. 

"Casey was always courteous, always a smile on his face," said a Garden City neighbor of Falconer, who was an only child. "I just can't believe it."

Wayne County coroner Edward Howell on Thursday said all three men were students in the aviation program at Farmingdale College at SUNY, but they were not flying as part of any college program.

Farmingdale spokesman Patrick Calabria said the plane was not owned by the college and the flight was not part of any college program.

"The campus is in shock," Calabria said. "We're all trying to come to grips with this. Our hearts are with the family and friends of those killed and injured."

Calabria said the college aviation program has existed since the 1960s, and has a pilot training track and an airport management track. Currently, approximately 200 students are enrolled in the aviation program.

Sheridan was a senior, as is Kisseloff, according to Calabria; Falconer was a sophomore.

Howell said autopsies will be conducted Friday.

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the accident.

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