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Thu, Aug 30, 2007

Florida C206 Accident Being Investigated As Possible Suicide

Pilot Told Mom He Would "Fly East Until He Could Not Fly Anymore."

The pilot involved in a weekend Cessna 206 accident is under suspicion of having used his employer's aircraft to commit suicide.

Daren Ramphal, 25, perished when the aircraft (type shown above) he was flying went down in a field east of Interstate 75 in Sumter County, FL. Ramphal took off from Herlong Airport (HEG) on Jacksonville's westside early Sunday morning. Wreckage was located later that evening, according to WJXT Channel 4 News.

According to a police report, the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office received a call about a possible suicide attempt at HEG apparently from his former girlfriend who said he'd called her about 5:00 am and said he'd been drinking beer and taking some sort of medication.

Officers were told Ramphal had been depressed recently over the breakup of his relationship with this girlfriend and of being of mixed nationality.

When officers arrived at the airport, they located Ramphal's vehicle just as they heard a plane taking off. When officers discovered the hangar owned by his employer, Skydive Jax, was empty, his parents were contacted.

Ramphal's mother told officers she had spoken with him about 5:15 that morning and was told he "was going to fill the plane and fly east until he could not fly any more."

The Federal Aviation Administration was then notified as were the Civil Air Patrol and Coast Guard to monitor for an emergency location transmitter signal.

CAP located the aircraft in a field near state road 50, north of Bushnell with Ramphal's body about 20 yards from the fuselage.

The National Transportation Safety Board will be investigating.

IDENTIFICATION
  Regis#: 904DZ        Make/Model: C206      Description: 206, P206, T206, TP206, U206, TU206,  (T
  Date: 08/26/2007     Time: 0930

  Event Type: Accident   Highest Injury: Fatal     Mid Air: N    Missing: N
  Damage: Destroyed

LOCATION
  City: BUSHNELL   State: FL   Country: US

DESCRIPTION
  AIRCRAFT CRASHED UNDER UNKNOWN CIRCUMSTANCES, NEAR BUSHNELL, FL

INJURY DATA      Total Fatal:   1
                 # Crew:   1     Fat:   1     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:   
                 # Pass:   0     Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:   
                 # Grnd:         Fat:   0     Ser:   0     Min:   0     Unk:   

WEATHER: NOT REPORTED

OTHER DATA
  Activity: Unknown      Phase: Unknown      Operation: OTHER


  FAA FSDO: ORLANDO, FL  (SO15)                   Entry date: 08/27/2007

FMI: www.cap.gov, www.jaa.aero/as/herlong.asp, www.skydivejacksonville.com

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