The two victims of a single-engine plane crash last month, at Santa Monica Airport, were both successful Internet entrepreneurs. Both men loved flying and worked for companies that specialized in air travel.
The pilot of the plane, Paulo Emanuele, was the general manager for the Airliners.net web site, and according to a statement on the aviation news site he worked for, he was an “amazing pilot.”
The other passenger of the plane, Martin Schaedel, was a consultant for FareCompare, which is a web site that compares airline fares. Press reports state that he was a frequent flier who routinely logged more than 100,000 miles per year.
A posting on Airliners.net, described Emanuele as “an amazing pilot, an amazing photographer, an amazing friend, and an amazing father.” The posting also stated he “will be remembered for his passion, his kindness, and his love for life.”
Schaedel, who was born in Sweden and stayed with friends during his global treks, was staying with a friend in West Hollywood according to reports. He had left a meeting with an Internet company in Santa Monica and headed for the local airport.
Schaedel had a blog. His brief bio explained how he used to be a partner in a Venture capital, but now he “mainly focuses on Buyouts/M&A”. He also wrote, “I live nowhere, originally from Sweden, then lived in London, Shanghai, and briefly in Tokyo. He continued to explain how he “loves new ideas,” and has been online for as long as he can remember.
Federal Aviation Administration Spokesperson, Ian Gregor, stated the red, single-engine Marchetti SF-260 airplane crashed at the west end of the runway. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash, but officials believe the plane lost engine power shortly after takeoff.
The airplane was registered to Malibu-based Wingspan Inc. and based at Santa Monica Airport. Gregor also stated that it was registered as an “experimental craft”.
Eyewitness reports described the plane having trouble immediately after takeoff, and hearing the engine sputter as it climbed, only to go straight down and exploding on impact. The crash is still under investigation.