SAN DIEGO — A San Diego man has been identified as one of six people killed when two sea planes collided in Alaska on Monday. The planes were carrying cruise ship passengers on a sightseeing tour when they crashed. Four Americans were killed including 46-year-old Louis Botha from San Diego. An Australian man and Canadian woman also died.
Neighbors say Louis Botha lived in a 4S Ranch home with his wife and two children. They bought the home more than a decade ago.
Botha was Director of Software Engineering at Nextivity according to his Linked In page and fellow employees said he was well known and well liked. His family attended services at Escondido United Reform Church according to an employee who declined to comment out of respect to Botha's family.
Fellow passengers on the Royal Princess cruise ship that Botha was on were stunned to hear the news of two sightseeing planes carrying passengers from their boat colliding in mid-air, killing six people including Botha. The group was on a cruise excursion to see glaciers.
Preliminary data shows one plane carrying eleven people was heading southwest toward Ketchikan and descended to about 3,300 feet. The second plane with five aboard was moving in a similar direction at about the same altitude before the collision. Witnesses raced over to help.
Botha's cruise started in Vancouver, Canada on May 11 and had three days remaining as of Wednesday. Passengers say they are continuing their trip with heavy hearts.