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Top Stories 2019: Tragedies on the North Fork

A series of tragedies across the North Fork left the community mourning throughout 2019.

In early January, a 63-year-old man was fatally shot by police after a more than four-hour standoff in Greenport. Police believed the man was suicidal. Negotiators attempted to convince the man to exit the house on Route 48. He came out waving a shotgun and officers were forced to fire once. The victim, identified as Robert Myers, was transported to Stony Brook University Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

In June, a Beechcraft A36 plane crashed in a field in Mattituck, killing the two passengers aboard. The plane crashed in the morning on the north end of Harbes Farm.

The plane had departed MacArthur Airport around 9 a.m. before running into engine trouble while en route to New England. The pilot was Robert Mark, 66, who was flying with longtime girlfriend, Susan Quagliano, 57, both of Oakdale. Although the plane was destroyed, a dog aboard managed to escape unharmed.

In August, Lisa Margaritis, who had recently celebrated her 48th birthday, died tragically in a paddleboard accident in Southold. She had attempted to rescue another woman who was caught in a rip current in Hashamomuck Pond. She was remembered as someone who “touched so many people in a bright way,” her husband, Peter, said.

In September, the community mourned 10-year-old Amber Stulsky, who died in a car crash in Greenport. The young girl was just about to start fifth grade at Southold Elementary School.

In November, a boat crash in the bay in Mattituck claimed the life of 27-year-old Kelley Blanchard, who was remembered as a vibrant woman who always helped others.

Photo caption: The small plane crashed in Mattituck in June. (Credit: Doug Kuntz/file)