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Statement from National Air Traffic Controllers Association President Paul Rinaldi, on the death of Mark Goldstein, pilot of the aircraft involved in the accident in Wichita – (10/30/2014)

“We are shocked, and deeply saddened by the death of our beloved colleague, friend, and NATCA brother Mark Goldstein in today’s tragic accident in Wichita. We extend our deepest condolences to Mark’s family and friends, and to the families of the other victims of this accident. Our thoughts go out to all of our members and FAA employees at Wichita Tower and TRACON, where Mark served as a very skilled and highly professional air traffic controller for 24 years. This is a terrible loss for them, and for everyone who knew Mark.

“Mark was supremely focused and talented in his service of ensuring aviation safety during his career. He won NATCA’s Central Region Archie League Medal of Safety Award in the first two years of the program, 2004 and 2005. Next Tuesday is the 10th anniversary of the first of his two award-winning flight assists. In 2005, our current and longtime Wichita Facility Representative, Pat Pelkowski, wrote, ‘Mark is a very conscientious air traffic controller. He is extremely experienced not only as a controller but as a pilot. This dual experience has helped Mark to make numerous suggestions to pilots in distress and help many controllers who needed assistance.’

“Mark started his air traffic control career in the U.S. Navy in 1981. After serving five years, he was hired by the FAA and went to work in Salina, Kan., in 1987. He transferred to Wichita Tower in 1989. He was an instrument, commercial, and multi-engine rated pilot with a degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. His roles with NATCA also included serving on our Central Region Runway Safety Action Team. He will be deeply missed.

“We are saddened by the loss of all the lives in today’s accident.”

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