Search for Krupinski Plane Temporarily Suspended Due to Sea Conditions

Police searched the beach near Town Line Road for wreckage from the plane Sunday morning. Durell Godfrey

The Coast Guard has suspended its search for a plane that crashed into the Atlantic off Amagansett and its two missing occupants because of "rapidly deteriorating sea conditions," East Hampton Town police said Sunday afternoon. 

A search by land is still being conducted along East Hampton Town and Southampton Town beaches, as the current was moving west from where the plane crashed. The search in the water will continue as sea conditions improve and it becomes safe to deploy East Hampton Town Marine Patrol vessels, police said. 

Four people were aboard the twin-engine Piper Navajo when it crashed off the Amagansett shoreline on Saturday around 3 p.m.

Ben Krupinski, an East Hampton custom home builder, his wife, Bonnie Bistrian Krupinski, and their grandson, William Maerov, 22, were passengers, police said. Jon Dollard, 47, of Hampton Bays was identified as the pilot.

Rescuers recovered two bodies, but the other two are still missing. Police have not said which people were found and which are still missing. 

"I am in shock and filled with great sadness at the loss of Ben and Bonnie Krupinski, their grandson, William Maerov, and pilot Jon Dollard in yesterday’s tragic accident," East Hampton Town Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc said in a statement on Sunday.

"Ben and Bonnie’s influence and generosity reached every corner of our community. They were fully committed to East Hampton and they will be sorely missed," he said. "Our thoughts and prayers are with them, their friends, and family."

Representative Lee Zeldin called the news devastating. "I knew Ben and Bonnie well and was very saddened by the tragic news of their passing. They were a larger-than-life couple everyone knew, loved, and respected," he said. The couple were Republican Committee supporters.

"They will be dearly missed by their family, friends, employees, and neighbors who adored them, their vision, love of flying, entrepreneurship, and devotion to the East End of Long Island. May all four rest in peace as Long Island prays for them and their loved ones at this time," Mr. Zeldin added. 

Durell Godfrey