October 14, 2011 by staff
William Spencer, 64, of the Costa del Sol, was being treated for a leg injury in a hospital in Port Moresby last night. He was one of four people who survived the accident.
Son of Mr. Spencer, Conal Hanna, said the pilot loved flying planes in PNG.
”He is fluent in Pidgin and has a great affection for the people of New Guinea,”said Mr. Hanna. ”Although I have not spoken to him how upset I will be in the loss of life.”
The family was trying to contact Mr. Spencer last night.
Mr. Hanna said Mr. Spencer had been working with Airlines PNG from a year ago. He also worked in Australia, including a job as an instructor of Singapore Airlines.
A New Zealand pilot also survived. The other two are believed to be a crew member and a passenger.
The plane took off from Lae, but crashed about 20 miles southeast of Madang on the afternoon of Thursday. Local media reported the Dash 8 aircraft was flying in bad weather.
Staff Madang General Hospital presented Modilon tarps for dead near the door. Last night the family members of crash victims gathered in the gardens of the hospital.
Treacherous terrain hampered efforts to recover the bodies of the victims, many of whom were heading to a graduation ceremony at Divine Word University.
The lack of radio communication with personnel who were sent to collect the bodies and the lack of helicopters makes it difficult to reach the crash site.
A Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade spokesman said there was no indication that the Australians were killed.
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