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Dead pilots retrieved, at mortuary

Luke Rawalai And Serafina Silaitoga
Saturday, March 03, 2018

STUDENT pilot Merelesita Lutu and instructor Iliesa Tawalo, who died in a plane crash earlier this week, were finally taken to the Labasa Hospital at 5pm yesterday escorted by police and members of the rescue team.

Close family members of the victims flew to Labasa Town earlier in the day to await the arrival of crash fatalities at the hospital.

Ms Lutu's family members who live on Vanua Levu began arriving at Labasa Hospital at 8am.

Ms Lutu's father, Emosi Lutu, said they were waiting for word from police before making funeral arrangements.

"We will wait for investigation processes to be completed before we can finalise plans for Mere's final funeral rites," he said.

Mr Lutu said at 7pm yesterday he was at the mortuary to identify his daughter.

Meanwhile, at 4.48pm a statement from Acting Deputy Commissioner of Police Rusiate Tudravu revealed that the remains of the two had been transported to the Labasa Hospital where a post-mortem examination would be conducted.

"Officers continue to guard the scene and await the investigation to be conducted by the New Zealand appointed investigator," Mr Tudravu said.

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