Continental pilot dies mid-flight, but plane lands safely

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June 18, 2009 22:48

 
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The pilot of a Continental Airlines flight from Brussels to Newark died over the Atlantic Ocean on Thursday, but the jet landed safely with two co-pilots at the controls. The 247 passengers aboard Flight 61 weren't told of the pilot's death and flight attendants continued serving snacks, though the crew did ask for the help of any doctors aboard. Several passengers approached the cockpit, including one doctor who told The Associated Press the pilot appeared to have suffered a heart attack. The 60-year-old Newark-based pilot, with 32 years of service to the airline, is believed to have died of natural causes, said Kelly Cripe, a spokeswoman for the Houston-based airline. A relief pilot was on board during the flight and took the place of the deceased pilot, Cripe said. The Boeing 777 touched down on time just before noon at Newark Liberty International Airport.

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