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UPDATE: Two dead in plane crash identified

(Credit: Stringer News)

The two passengers killed when their small plane crashed in a farm field on the north end of Harbes Farm in Mattituck Saturday morning are Robert Mark, 66, the pilot, and Susan Quagliano, 57, both of Oakdale, Southold Town Police Chief Martin Flatley said Sunday.

An FAA spokesperson said Mr. Mark and Ms. Quagliano were on board the Beechcraft A36 when it crashed at about 9:15 a.m. Lt. Richard Perkins of the Southold Police Department confirmed both passengers died in the crash. He said Saturday morning that a dog somehow escaped from the crash and survived. Investigators said the dog was retrieved after the crash by a friend of the victims.

No other information about the couple was provided.

The plane departed MacArthur airport around 9 a.m. before running into engine trouble en route to New England, Lt. Perkins said. The fire was extinguished by members of the Jamesport Fire Department, he said.

Investigators say the couple was badly burned in the fire.

The FAA said it will be investigating the incident and the National Transportation Safety Board will determine the cause of the crash.

Police set up near Harbes Farm in Mattituck. (Credit: Steve Wick)

Chief Mario Carrera of the Jamesport Fire Department offered his condolences to the families of the victims in a statement he gave to the media at the crash site.

“We arrived on the scene and the plane was pretty much fully engulfed and burning very well,” he said. “It was lost to the point where [the fire] was going out.”

Mr. Carrera said volunteers responded with two engines and heavy rescue equipment, dousing the last of the flames while doing their best to preserve the scene for investigators.

On Sunday afternoon, the Harbes family released an updated statement:

“Yesterday around 9:30 a.m., a small plane crashed into our farm field after flying low over our Mattituck property. Firefighters, police officers and rescue personnel arrived at the scene within minutes and put out the ensuing fire. While enroute to the scene, Edward Harbes recovered a dog that was found to have been an occupant of the plane. The dog appeared to be in good health and has been reunited with his family. This is a sad tragedy, and our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the passengers of the aircraft.”

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