Yvonne Selke and Emily Selke, Nokesville Mom, Daughter, Presumed Dead in French Plane Crash

A government contractor and her daughter from northern Virginia are among the 150 people presumed dead in Tuesday's plane crash in the French Alps.

Yvonne Selke, of Nokesville, Virginia, a longtime and highly regarded employee of Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., in Washington, D.C., and her adult daughter, Emily Selke, were both identified as passengers on the Germanwings plane.

A third American was also on the plane but has not yet been identified, a State Department spokeswoman said at a Wednesday afternoon briefing.

"Our entire family is deeply saddened by the losses of Yvonne and Emily Selke. Two wonderful, caring, amazing people who meant so much to so many," the Selke family said in a statement released Wednesday. "At this difficult time we respectfully ask for privacy and your prayers."

Yvonne Selke worked with the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, the Pentagon's satellite mapping office. The director of the agency, Robert Cardillo, offered condolences to the family and her co-workers.

“Every death is a tragedy, but seldom does a death affect us all so directly and unexpectedly,” said Cardillo. “All of us offer our deepest condolences and will keep her family and her colleagues in our thoughts.”

A Booz Allen spokeswoman said Yvonne Selke was a "wonderful co-worker and a dedicated employee" who was with the company for nearly 23 years.

"Just really nice people," said neighbor Richard Ocksrider of the Selke family. "Every time I saw them, they'd wave and say hi."

Ocksrider's son, Ryan, said he was friendly with Emily Selke while growing up.

"I've known her probably nine, 10 years," said Ryan Ocksrider. "Everyone knew each other when we were little in the neighborhood. She would just be real nice and happy, never really upset about anything."

Emily Selke graduated from Woodbridge Senior High School in 2010 with honors, and three years later, graduated from the music industry program at Drexel University with honors, officials at both schools confirmed.

"Drexel is deeply saddened to hear about the tragic loss of alumna Emily Selke and her mother. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends," Drexel's statement read.

Emily Selke worked with Carr Workplaces in Alexandria, Virginia, as a community manager, according to her LinkedIn page.

Emily Selke's sorority at Drexel, Gamma Sigma Sigma, said in a statement on its Facebook page with a photo of Emily that it was mourning her loss and said she "always put others before herself and cared deeply for all those in her life."

One hundred fifty people are feared dead after the German passenger jet crashed in the French Alps Tuesday morning.

Germanwings flight 4U 9525 was less than an hour into its route from Barcelona to Dusseldorf when it went into a long descent and crashed between Barcelonnette and Digne, the airline's CEO said Tuesday.

It's not clear what caused the descent or crash. French officials said terrorism appeared unlikely, and Germany's top security official said Wednesday there was no evidence of foul play.

French officials said a black box recovered from the ill-fated plane was damaged but hoped the cockpit recordings inside would help them unlock the mystery of what caused the crash.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the U.S. was reviewing records to determine whether any other U.S. citizens might have been on board the flight.

"We extend our deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of the 150 people on board," Psaki said.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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