A Kansas community is in mourning after a family of six was killed in a plane crash and their remains were taken out of a Florida swamp.
A prominent businessman, his wife and their four children were killed as their single-turboprop, fixed-wing plane was heading home to Junction City from the Bahamas, when it broke apart and went down about 12:30 p.m. in the Tiger Creek Preserve.
According to the Associated Press, Junction City Mayor Pat Landes said, "It's just a horrific loss."
Deputies reached the area by helicopters, but it was clear there were no survivors, the sheriff's office said. The cause of the crash wasn't immediately known, and parts of the plane were found nearly three and a half miles away, investigators said.
Ron Bramlage, a businessman in Junction City who owned Roadside Ventures LLC, was piloting the 2006 Pilatus Pc-12/47. The 45-year-old, his wife, Rebecca, 43, and the couple's children - Brandon, 15; Boston, 13; Beau, 11; and 8-year-old Roxanne - were killed.
Mayor Landes said the family was well known in town and at Kansas State University, where the basketball arena is named for Ron Bramlage's grandfather.
At least two dozen bouquets of flowers lined the black wrought-iron fence surrounding the family's ranch-style home by Thursday evening. A trampoline sat in the front lawn, and a hammock hung between two large trees in the wooded yard.
The well wishes have been pouring in as neighbors, friends and the entire community have expressed their condolences.
Ron and Rebecca Bramlage were graduates of Kansas State University and members of the K-State Alumni Association, President's Club, Foundation Trustees and Ahearn Fund.
University President Kirk Schulz and Athletics Director John Currie said in a joint statement:
"The Bramlage family holds a special place in the history of Kansas State University and K-State Athletics, and Ron and Becky have been loyal supporters and great fans of K-State. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Bramlage family during this difficult time."
Ron was the grandson of the late Fred Bramlage, a 1935 graduate of K-State and Junction City businessman. Fred Bramlage was the lead contributor to the construction of Bramlage Coliseum, a multipurpose arena that opened in 1988 and is home to the K-State men's and women's basketball teams.
A library in the city is named for Ron Bramlage's grandmother, Dorothy Bramlage. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Bramlage family during this terrible time.