TV show host who died in plane crash reached 100 to 150 feet before nose-diving, report states

Jose Wejebe, host of Spanish Fly

spanishflytv.com

Jose Wejebe, host of Spanish Fly

Airplane owned by Jose Wejebe

www.planepictures.net

Airplane owned by Jose Wejebe

The kit plane piloted by a television fishing show host killed in a crash in Everglades City earlier this month reached an altitude of 100 to 150 feet before it nose-dived, according to a preliminary report.

The National Transportation Safety Board released its early findings in the April 6 crash that killed Jose Wejebe, host of "Spanish Fly," a saltwater fishing show on the Outdoor Channel and formerly on ESPN.

In the report, investigators said, Webeje was flying an "experimental amateur-built" plane bound for Merritt Island Airport, an oceanside airport about 50 miles east of Orlando. A witness told investigators that Webeje left an Everglades City runway and rose about 100 to 150 feet when he made a sharp right turn and started nose-diving.

The plane crashed about 275 yards from the runway, the report said.

No flight plan was created, the report said. Near the time of the crash, winds at Naples Municipal Airport, about 30 miles northwest of Everglades Airpark, were measured at about 14 mph, with gusts up to 24 mph.

Webeje held a private pilot certificate and recently had a Federal Aviation Administration medical certificate issued, the report said.

In February, Webeje reported about 1,200 hours of total flight experience.

Wejebe was known for his extensive travels chasing big fish, which took him from the Gulf of Mexico to the Galapagos. Born in Cuba, he fled to Miami with his family after Fidel Castro's revolution, according to his website.

He made it into the mainstream in 1995 when the first episode of Spanish Fly aired on ESPN-2, following him on fishing expeditions. A second show, Vida del Mar, followed on ESPN in 2001.

© 2012 Naples Daily News. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 5

Sick writes:

Who gets paid to investigate a situation that will never be reproduced again?

What a waste.

sunburnt writes:

Sounds like a hunters stall

mr_1_term_proposition writes:

R.I.P. Jose, great show. You will be missed by friends and family.

scrapiron writes:

The Everglades Airport needs to be extended and is long overdue. Even the most skilled know it is extremely dangerous.But because it's Everglades City it doesn't get a second thought.

RIP Jose

swamp4ever writes:

in response to scrapiron:

The Everglades Airport needs to be extended and is long overdue. Even the most skilled know it is extremely dangerous.But because it's Everglades City it doesn't get a second thought.

RIP Jose

Where do you propose this expansion to take place? In the river or in the bay? Sure its dangerous, if you don't know what your doing. Maybe the govt should just do what they do best, hold our hand and coddle us and close the airpark so nobody else gets hurt. XO1 is the best place to fly in SWFL, leave it alone.

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