Coast Guard, Mexican Navy search for overdue aircraft in Gulf of Mexico

Coast Guard HC-144 Ocean Sentry file photo by Aux. Michael Dubin

Coast Guard HC-144 Ocean Sentry file photo by Aux. Michael Dubin

NEW ORLEANS — The Coast Guard and Secretaria de Marina, the Mexican Navy, are searching for the pilot of a small overdue aircraft that likely crashed in the Gulf of Mexico, Thursday.

Missing is Steven Schumacher from Missouri, the pilot of the overdue Piper Aztec twin engine plane, tail number N778PA. There were no passengers with him.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector New Orleans received a report from Schumacher’s family member, at approximately 10:30 p.m. Wednesday, that Schumacher did not reach his destination.

Schumacher left Missouri Wednesday afternoon and was scheduled to land in Gonzales, Louisiana, at approximately 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Schumacher’s last known position was 380 nautical miles south of Louisiana and 300 nautical miles east of Corpus Christi, Texas. An online flight tracker’s last contact for the plane indicated it was about 50 feet above the water.

Involved in the search are:

  • Coast Guard Aviation Training Center Mobile HC-144 Ocean Sentry air crew
  • Secretaria de Marina vessel

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