Pilot's body recovered from Hudson River plane crash

May 3, 2013 at 7:15 PM

GERMANTOWN, N.Y., May 3 (UPI) -- Divers in upstate New York Friday recovered the body of a pilot of a small plane that crashed into the Hudson River and sank a day earlier, officials said.

Police said the body of Michael B. Braunstien, 72, of Copake, was pulled from about 20 feet of water about 4:30 p.m. EDT, the Daily Freeman in Kingston reported.

Braunstien crashed his plane into the river Thursday afternoon between Catskill and Germantown about a half-hour after taking off from a private airfield in Copake, authorities said. He was believed to have been alone in the aircraft, the Freeman said.

Divers also found parts of his twin-engine, World War II-era Grumman G-44 reconnaissance plane that was designed to land on water, the newspaper said.

A witness told The Saratogian in Saratoga Springs the plane was circling and "at first I thought it was a pontoon plane and was just going to land. But his wing just stayed down and he hit the water and just spun. There was a bit of fire and then that was it."

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