Copter crash kills MB photographer

first_imgACCIDENT: The man was taking pictures of a cigar boat off the Florida coast. By Sandy Mazza STAFF WRITER A Manhattan Beach photographer was killed Tuesday when the helicopter he was riding in crashed off the Florida coast. Thomas William Newby, 50, the chief photographer for Powerboat magazine, was riding in a helicopter with two other men when it crashed into the Gulf of Mexico, south of Sarasota. Newby was shooting pictures of a cigar boat for the boating magazine. Videographer Mark Copeland, 44, of Raleigh, N.C., also was killed in the morning crash, said Lt. Chuck Lesaltato of the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office. Pilot Mark Watters, 44, of Pasadena was in serious condition. Local authorities have not determined the cause of the crash. A woman who answered the phone at Newby’s Manhattan Beach home Tuesday afternoon said family members did not want to talk publicly about his death. Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen said there will be an investigation into why the aircraft crashed. The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the crash after all the wreckage is removed from the water, Bergen said. The boat operator and a model aboard the vessel were unhurt. Sarasota County Fire Department Assistant Chief Paul Dezzi said the model, a nurse whose name was not immediately released, jumped in and kept the men afloat as rescue boats from more than a half-dozen agencies responded. “She dove right there into the fuel and was able to get a couple of guys out,” Dezzi said. The men were brought ashore on police boats. He said the helicopter went down in about 20 feet of water. [email protected] The Associated Press contributed to this article.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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