Northern Michigan Pilot Dies in Chicago Area Plane Crash

Authorities have identified the pilot and co-pilot of the cargo plane that crashed earlier this week into the Des Plaines River outside Chicago. Cook County Forest Preserve Police on Thursday identified the pilot as 38-year-old Stephen Ellis of Pontiac, Mich. The co-pilot was identified as 40-year-old Ryan Daenzer, who lived in Osceola County, Mich. Ellis was identified using identification cards in his possession, as well as fingerprint records. Fingerprint analysis was used to identify Daenzer. Ellis and Daenzer were aboard a Learjet 35A operated by Waterford, Mich.-based Royal Air Freight that crashed Tuesday near Chicago Executive Airport in Wheeling. Crews continued to work Thursday removing pieces of the plane from the Des Plaines River. The National Transportation Safety Board has yet to determine a cause for the accident. (Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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