Helicopter crash victim has KwaZulu-Natal roots

2012-07-13 00:00

ONE of the three crew members of a helicopter that crashed in Papua New Guinea has deep KwaZulu-Natal family roots.

This is according to Rachel van Witsen, a close family friend and solicitor.

Emmett Fynn (36), who lives in Australia, went missing when a Bell 206 helicopter operated by Hevilift went down last Friday afternoon.

The trio included Fynn, aircraft engineer, Captain Antony Annan (49) of New Zealand and pilot Captain Russell Aitken (42) of Australia.

Debris of the missing helicopter have since been found.

“We’ve only just been notified this evening by a Hevilift representative and the Australian High Commission, that particles were located in a river this afternoon.”

The debris included maintenance manuals, a plastic box from the rear storage of the helicopter and a cover with the Bell 206’s description.

“Two ground-clearing teams will start from either end of the river to search the area at first light tomorrow,” Van Witsen told The Witness yesterday.

She said this river would provide a definite target area for the search, which has gained fresh momentum.

One of Fynn’s forefathers was Henry Francis Fynn, who was an English traveller and trader.

“His diary covered the period from 1824 to 1836 and is the earliest account of the first white settler and describes life in Natal. It provides one of the best contemporary accounts of Shaka, and the nation and the kingdom of the Zulu in South Africa,” said Van Witsen.

She said Fynn was not married.

Fynn went to the International School in Port Moresby, but travelled to South Africa regularly to visit his family.

Van Witsen said it was a traumatic time for the family.

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