Theodore “Ted” Stevens of Alaska and four others were killed in an airplane crash Monday night in Alaska. Also on board was Sean O’Keefe, former head of NASA and current CEO of the European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company.
O’Keefe and his teenage son are among two others that survived the crash. The plane carried nine people including crew. The names of the remaining passengers are being withheld, per the notification of the deceased families.
According to the FAA, the aircraft was heading to a lodge in Lake Aleknagnik. The flight, which was being conducted under “visual fly rules,” had not been picked up by radar due to the fact that there is no coverage under 4,000 feet. In compliance with protocol, the NTSB has sent a team of investigators.
Senator Stevens was no stranger to public life, having served in the public sector for the past sixty years and playing a pivotal role in shaping Alaska. He was active in social development, conservation, Native American rights, and the famed Trans-Alaska Pipeline Act. He is also remembered for his early sponsorship of the Amateur Sports Act of 1978, which led to the establishment of the US Olympic Committee.
The longest serving Republican in the Senate, Stevens was not without his share of controversy. The former lawmaker was accused of writing laws which gave preferences to businessmen with government contracts. From which he would then reap the rewards. Senator Stevens’ Alaska home was raided by the FBI and IRS in July of 2007. The assumption was that he couldn’t afford to remodel his home on the scale it was redone.
Whatever you may have thought or felt in regards to the Senator, we all can agree that our hearts and prayers are with the Stevens Family, the families of the other casualties and the people of Alaska.
“Senator Ted Stevens built Alaska, fought for Alaska, he was Alaska” – Gov Sean Parnell , Alaska