Spokane heart doctor dies after Lake Chelan plane crash - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Spokane heart doctor dies after Lake Chelan plane crash

William F. Stifter, MD, FACC (http://www.hcnw.org) William F. Stifter, MD, FACC (http://www.hcnw.org)

LAKE CHELAN, Wash. - The Chelan County Sheriff's Department confirms that a Spokane heart doctor was one of the passengers killed when a float plane crashed in a remote area near Lake Chelan on Saturday.

64-year old William F. Stifter, a doctor with Heart Clinics Northwest, and his wife 60-year old Patricia Stifter, were aboard the charter flight carrying five people when it crashed during a routine water landing around 5:00 p.m.

Park rangers arrived to find the plane upside down and sinking. Three occupants had made it out safely. Two others were rescued from the plane as it sank.

Medical personnel performed CPR on Stifter and 67-year old Roberta Pitts of Stehekin, Wash, until they arrived at Chelan Community Hospital where they were both pronounced dead.

Patricia Stifter was transported to Chelan for treatment of hypothermia.

The plane's pilot, 61-year old Howard "Brick" E. Wellman of Chelan, suffered non-life threatening injuries and was flown to Chelan for treatment.

A sixteen-year old Stehekin girl seated in the back of the plane was treated and released at the scene.

Witnesses say the plane's landing gear were sticking out of the planes floats, which may have caused the aircraft to nosedive during landing.

FAA investigators took over the continuing investigation Sunday.

About William Stifter:
Dr. Stifter received his degree in medicine from Georgetown University School of Medicine in Washington, D.C., in 1974. His Internal Medicine Internship was completed at USC Medical Center in Los Angeles. Dr. Stifter's Residency and Cardiology Fellowship were completed at the University of California, Davis. He lives in Spokane with his wife and three children.
(http://www.hcnw.org)
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