Two Deaths in Georgia Small Plane Accident

A respected doctor and his educator wife died August 4, 2013 when the Hawker Beechcraft A36 in which they were flying crashed near Alma, Georgia, located about 70 miles northwest of Brunswick. According to authorities, their names were Sid Shah and Shama Gamkhar.

Significant Debris

The husband and wife were the only passengers on the plane, which was flying back to Georgia from Florida. Officials say the weather was good, and the plane was on an instrument flight plan through Jacksonville Center when the air traffic controllers lost contact at around 5,000 feet. Deputy Coroner Roy Crosby said it appeared that the pilot came into the treetops at a high rate of speed. An autopsy was performed on Dr. Shah, but results were not released.

Respected Doctor and Educator

Dr. Shah worked in Conyers, Georgia, where he focused on treating patients with chronic wounds and was credited with saving the limbs of as many as 500 patients. Colleagues said he was known for the time he took to know his patients and their individual needs, as well as his healing touch. Shama Gamkhar, his wife, taught at the LBJ School of Public Affairs and was an Associate Professor of Public Affairs at the University of Texas.

Crash Under Investigation

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) immediately began investigating the cause of the crash, but still has not released the results of the investigation. The NTSB will review data recorders, the debris field and other data to determine what may have caused the plane to crash and whether it was due to a problem with the plane or if it was related to pilot error.