UPDATE | One passenger on deadly plane crash identified

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Sunday, August, 26, 2018

1:28 p.m.

The United States Army Golden Knights confirmed a member of the US Army Parachute team was among one of the passengers killed in a plane crash in Swainsboro, Ga. on Saturday afternoon.

In a Facebook post, they said “It is with heavy hearts and great sadness that the US Army Parachute Team announces the recent death of SSG Aliaksandr “Alex” Bahrytsevich,”

They said he was just 31 years old, and was passionate about skydiving and was a mentor to other members of the parachute team. They also mentioned he was from Belarus originally.

They said he was a demonstrator with the Golden Knights Black Demonstration Team and is survived by his mother, Nattallia, and father, Mikhail.

Emanuel County Coroner Randy Love told News 12 all four plane crash victims will be taken for autopsy on Monday.

Saturday, August 25, 2018
(News 12 at 11)

EMANUEL COUNTY, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT)– A skydiving plane carrying five people crashed in Swainsboro this afternoon. Four people are left dead and one is still in the hospital. Officials say it crashed minutes after take off, then went up in flames.

As the sun dips down on the Swainsboro Golf Club, it was anything but a normal day on the course for Brandon Barnes.

“Me and my buddy was going to hole number one and we see the plane take off.” Barnes continued, “We got to the end of the row of, heard a big ole bang.”

The bang was the Cessna 182A crashing at East Georgia Regional Airport. A skydiving plane from a company in Statesboro.

“We got one guy over the fence, gave him the fire extinguisher, and pulled two people out of the plane.”

Officials say it was a skydiving instructor and four students going out for a lesson, four of five were killed in the crash. Emmanuel County Sheriff Stephens said in a Saturday night press conference it was one of the worst he’s ever seen.

“This is the worst crash, as far as fatalities are concerned with aircrafts, in my 34 years as Sheriff of Emanuel County.”

The sheriff confirms the last victim is in Augusta, at a hospital, but his condition is still unknown.

An investigator for National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) arrived on scene shortly after. As he took pictures, it started the beginning of NTSB’s investigation as for the cause of the crash. But NTSB reps say a preliminary report will not be available for at least 7 to 10 days.

But through all the wreckage– it’s victims and their families– is what the mayor, the fire chief and sheriff are thinking about the most.

Sheriff Stephens said, “It effects so many people. So many children. So many mothers. So many fathers, sons, brothers, sisters–sad day, sad day.”

7:18 p.m.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

EMANUEL COUNTY, Ga.(WRDW/WAGT)– The Emanuel County Sheriff says four of five people who were on board the plane are dead, and the condition of the fifth passenger is still unknown.

In a Saturday evening press conference, ECSO said it is having a difficult time notifying families of the plane passengers because many of them did not live locally. Adding, one of the four people was from overseas.

Sheriff J Tyson Stephens said, “This is the worst crash, as far as fatalities, that I’ve seen as Sheriff for 34 years in Emanuel County.”

This is a developing story. News 12 will keep you updated.

2:08 p.m.

EMANUEL COUNTY, Ga, (WRDW/WAGT)– Investigators say a plane carrying five people crashed at Emanuel County Airport. The Coroner tells us they are on scene.

The Swainsboro Police and Emanuel County Sheriff’s Office are at the airport, working to figure out what happened.

This is a developing story, we are working to find out more information. A News 12 crew is headed to the scene.

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