UPDATE #6: Global News reports Prentice’s friend and retired businessman Sheldon Reid was another victim of the crash. Prentice and Gallatly had reportedly gone to Kelowna to golf and have dinner with friends in Kelowna before boarding the plane back to Calgary.
UPDATE #5: Minister of Transportation Marc Garneau says he’s appointed a Minister’s Observer to keep him informed on the TSB’s investigation.
“I extend my heartfelt thoughts and support to all the victims of this accident. I had the honour of serving with the Honourable Jim Prentice in the House of Commons for over two years and I had the utmost respect for him and his service to Canadians. He will be greatly missed.
“Safety is the Government’s top priority. We are cooperating fully with the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) in its investigation to determine the root causes of this accident. The Minister’s Observer will obtain factual information from the ongoing investigation, advise the department of any significant regulatory factors, identify deficiencies that require immediate corrective actions, and coordinate the required support during the investigation.”
UPDATE #4: The B.C. Coroners Service says it has had a coroner from Kelowna on the scene since this morning and identification specialists are on their way from Burnaby. It confirms there were four people on board the Cessna Citation jet, which left the Kelowna Airport en route for Calgary shortly after 10 p.m. on October 14th.
Barb McLintock says preliminary reports indicate it be a complex scene to investigate, like many other air crashes. No identities will be confirmed until all of the bodies are recovered. More information isn’t expected before Monday.
UPDATE #3: Another victim of the plane crash has been identified. Global News says Calgary optometrist Dr. Ken Gellatly was one of the other three people killed. Gellatly is the father-in-law of Jim’s daughter Cassia Prentice.
UPDATE #2: B.C. NDP leader John Horgan has issued a statement:
“I was very saddened to learn of the passing of Jim Prentice. Like all public figures, Mr. Prentice devoted his time trying to make life better for people in the way he thought was best. We thank him for his contribution to the people of Alberta. Our hearts are with his family and friends as they try and make their way through this difficult time.”
UPDATE: B.C. RCMP have confirmed four people died in the Lake Country crash Thursday night. Corporal Dan Moskaluk says mounties reached the scene just after midnight with police dogs but weren’t able to find any survivors. He adds there was “catastrophic damage”.
The aircraft crashed shortly after takeoff from the Kelowna Airport. It landed in a heavily wooded area four kilometres away.
Authorities are now working to identify the deceased. RCMP are working with the TSB and B.C. Coroners Service.
Former premier Jim Prentice has died in a plane crash. iPolitics.ca quotes sources as saying the crash happened near Kelowna around 9:40 p.m. local time Thursday night.
The Cessna was en route to Calgary and all four people were on board were killed. The B.C. Coroner’s office has not publicly named the deceased and the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party has not confirmed Prentice was on the plane. The Transportation Safety Board is investigating,
Premier Rachel Notley has cancelled an appearance in Red Deer today and has reportedly planned a media conference for later today. Prentice, who was 60, leaves behind his wife Karen, three children, and two grandchildren.
The condolences are pouring in: