Search continues for Oklahoma animal rescue pilot last seen over the Gulf of Mexico
OKLAHOMA CITY (KOKH) —
The search continues for a missing plane from Wiley Post Airport.
The single engine plane, piloted by Dr. Bill Kinsinger, was last seen Wednesday headed into the Gulf of Mexico. Kinsinger was on his way to the Austin-area to pick up homeless pets.
Kinsinger's associate at Pilots N Paws rescue Kelly Rosson says the ultimate outcome doesn't look good but she's keeping a positive outlook. She hopes that Kinsinger is still alive and says he was doing what he loves: rescuing dogs and giving them a new home. By day Kinsinger was an anesthesiologist, but by night he rescued dogs from kill shelters across the country.
"He has flown many pets here to me to foster for one night. For several nights. I think the most that he's ever done was five in one flight," Rosson said.
Just after 2:15 p.m. Jan. 3 Kinsinger left from Wiley Post Airport for a pickup from Georgetown, Texas. He planned to drop the dog off in Las Vegas. Rosson says that for every flight all of the pilots keep in contact with each other, letting them know when they are going to take off.
Through a group chat, everyone was able to see Kinsinger go off radar.
"Bill had communicated that he was just about to be wheels up at Wiley Post at 2:16 and at 2:19 he actually took off," Rosson said.
He was supposed to land in Georgetown at 6:19 p.m. but lost communication about 30 minutes before his scheduled landing.
"When he said he was going to be somewhere at 3:30, at 3:29 he arrived. So, it was not like him to not be on time," Rosson said.
A military plane was sent to investigate Kinsinger's plane in the air and found the pilot slumped over, unresponsive. The plane later lost sight of Kinsinger's aircraft.
"I'm still hopefule that Bill can be found," Rosson said.
The FAA says the Coast Guard deployed a plane from Clearwater, Florida to aid in the search and is searching for the plane approximately 118 nautical miles north of the Yucatan Peninsula.
Kinsinger is the medical director of obstetric anesthesia at INTEGRIS Baptist Medical Center.