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Tue, Jul 11, 2017

NTSB Determines 2016 Alaska Crash A Double Suicide

Husband And Wife Were Said To Be 'Inseparable'

An accident which occurred on December 15th last year in Alaska has been ruled a double suicide by both medical examiners and the NTSB.

Fox News reports that the pilot of the airplane, 62-year-old Mark Matter, and his 63-year-old wife Cecilia were aboard the ski-equipped Piper PA-11 when it impacted terrain. Both were fatally injured.

At the time of the accident, the couple's children told television station KYUK that Cecilia was suffering from cancer, and did not have long to live. The couple was inseparable, they said, and Mark would have been devastated to try to live without her.

According to the NTSB's probable cause report, the airplane sustained substantial damage following impact with rising snow-covered terrain about 40 miles south of Aniak, Alaska. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident and no flight plan was on file.

The flight departed Aniak Airport (PANI), about 1400, and was destined for an off-airport ski strip about 40 miles south of Aniak near Marvel Creek.

On December 16, Alaska State Troopers were notified by family members that the airplane did not return as scheduled. The wreckage was located on the southwest side of Marvel Dome at an elevation about 2,000 feet above ground level (agl).

An incident report from the Alaska State Troopers lists the pilot's death as a suicide under the heading of Incident Activities/Offenses. Following a death investigation, the State Medical Examiner classified the manner of death as a suicide.

The National Transportation Safety Board determined the probable cause of the accident to be the pilot's intentional flight of the airplane into terrain in an act of suicide.

(Public domain image. Not accident airplane)

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