6 Missing After Small Plane Lost Contact

Three adults and three children are missing after their aircraft lost contact over Lake Erie, according to local reports. The plane took off from Cleveland’s Burke Lakefront Airport around 11 p.m. Thursday. The U.S. Coast Guard is searching for the group, who had all attended a Cleveland Cavaliers game before boarding the plane. The Columbus Dispatch reports the plane was flown by John T. Fleming, chief executive of Superior Beverage Group. According to the man’s father, John W. Fleming, the younger Fleming was on board the aircraft with his wife and two teenage sons, along with a neighbor and that neighbor’s daughter. “They think they may have crashed into Lake Erie,” he said. He described Fleming as “an experienced pilot” but did not specify how long he’d been flying. “The Coast Guard dispatched a helicopter from air station Detroit and has partnered with the Canadian Coast Guard, who sent a C-130 plane down to assist in the search,” according to a statement by the Coast Guard. The twin-engine Cessna Citation 525 was en route to Ohio State University’s airport. Large 12- to 15-foot waves on the lake have reportedly made the search more difficult, Coast Guard officials say.