Published: Tue, March 13, 2018
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Passenger killed in NY helicopter crash had St. Louis connections

Passenger killed in NY helicopter crash had St. Louis connections

The five passengers killed Sunday when the helicopter they were riding in crashed into New York City's East River included two childhood friends, a choral singer, a tourist from Argentina and a basketball enthusiast planning to get married in May.

Dallas Fire-Rescue officials say Brian McDaniel was on vacation in NY when the helicopter went down on Sunday.

McDaniel, 26, worked the "C-shift" at DFR Station 36 in West Dallas.

"Despite his short tenure, hearts are heavy with grief as we not only try to come to grips with his loss departmentally; but to also be there in every way that we can for this family", he said.

Andrew Vidales, McDaniel's cycling coach at Bishop Lynch, said McDaniel "always had a smile on his face, very talkative and very optimistic". The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the incident and is slated to provide an update on the crash late Monday afternoon.

The pilot reportedly blamed the crash on engine failure; the pilot himself managed to free himself from the helicopter and was rescued by a tugboat.

The station says Trevor Cadigan graduated from Southern Methodist University with a major in Journalism and had recently moved to New York City to begin a career with the Business Insider.

Joseph Masinter says McDaniel was his best friend from their middle school days at The Shelton School.

"The entire WFAA family is heartbroken by the sudden and tragic loss of Trevor Cadigan", Brad Ramsey, WFAA president and general manager, said in a statement. He freelanced for The Dallas Morning News and also interned at WFAA-TV (Channel 8), where his father works.

Michelle Longoria taught Trevor Cadigan journalism in his sophomore year at Bishop Lynch. The helicopter crash landed in the East River, flipped upside down and then submerged into the cold water, authorities said.

5 On Your Side looked into the history of Liberty Helicopters, the company that chartered the flight that crashed into the Hudson. "In that, I saw this incredible birth of a young man who found something that he really, really wanted to do".

When emergency workers reached the helicopter, the passengers were tightly harnessed and had to be cut out, Fire Department of New York Commissioner Daniel Nigro said.

It's unclear what caused Sunday's deadly crash.

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