Five (sorta) missing people in the wreckage of a crashed plane

So, if a plane crashes and they find the crash site but are unable to recover the bodies for whatever reason, I don’t usually consider those people to be missing, even by my quite generous definition. After all, their fate and the location of their remains is known.

But today, I added five people whose case fit those parameters: plane crash, wreckage found. I decided I could just about wedge the case within the Charley Project’s case requirements because, after the crash site was initially located, it vanished again. It moved.

I doubt that happens all that often, but this was in Alaska, the Land That Eats People.

A small plane carrying four Polish tourists and their pilot was on an aerial tour of Denali National Park when it hit the side of the mountain. This was at 11,000-foot elevation, on an unstable field of ice and snow. When park rangers found the site a few days later, the plane was embedded in snow right on the side of a cliff, as you can see in the photo accompanying this article. The fact that it’s gone now is not terribly surprising: shifting/melting ice and snow, wind, etc.

So anyway, the victims are now up on my site: the pilot, Craig Layson, from Michigan, and the four passengers: Janusz Intek, Maria Libacka, Kazimierz Miernik and Robert Sieniawski, all of them Poles. Rest In Peace. The mountain is their grave.

5 thoughts on “Five (sorta) missing people in the wreckage of a crashed plane

  1. J. Leon August 14, 2019 / 12:08 am

    Not to nitpick, and I didn’t check your source so it might have been wrong there as well, but the correct registration number for the aircraft-as confirmed by a Google search that linked to the National Transportation Safety Board’s database entry for the crash-is N323KT. All civil aircraft registration numbers in the United States start with N.

    And I’d say you’re being consistent in listing these cases, given that you did the same for Congressmen Hale Boggs and Nick Begich, along with their pilot, who sadly suffered a similar fate.

    • Meaghan August 14, 2019 / 12:10 am

      Thanks, duly noted!

      I wish I knew more about the Poles. I don’t even have anything on their personal appearance at all. Surely there must have been some info in the Polish press about this; I ought to dig more.

      • Ivana Lucy August 14, 2019 / 5:09 pm

        I read Polish, will help you wit this one

  2. Naj August 14, 2019 / 11:56 am

    I’m from Poland and did a quick search for you. Honestly I haven’t heard about this before and from what I see, there was almost no info in media in Poland about it. The names are popular and lots of people come up. And when I google the crash it’s just raw facrs, as in your summary. Sometimes even without names… maybe they lived in America and had no relatives in Poland?

    • Meaghan August 14, 2019 / 12:03 pm

      Every source I saw said they were tourists visiting from Poland. The Polish government declined to identify them for the press and I only know their names cause they’re in NamUs.

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