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Indian-American among seven killed in Afghanistan cargo plane crash

Rinku Summan
Rinku Summan met his wife, Rajnit, while training and they both began their airline careers together at Mesa Airlines.


Atlanta, GA: Canton, Michigan based Indian-American, Rinku Summan, was among the seven people killed recently when a cargo plane crashed after taking off from Bagram Air Field in Afghanistan, according to media reports. Friends remember Summan as a devoted family man and a good friend.

Six people from Michigan were on the plane, which was carrying vehicles and general cargo from Afghanistan to Dubai, when it crashed just after takeoff about 7 a.m. EDT.

The Dubai-bound Boeing 747-400 — operated by National Air Cargo — crashed just after takeoff Monday from Bagram Air Base around 11:20 a.m. local time, the National Transportation Safety Board said in a statement. The accident site is within the perimeter of Bagram Air Base, reports AP.

The NTSB said it will lead a team of three investigators to assist the Afghanistan Ministry of Transportation and Commercial Aviation in investigating the crash. Kaufman said the plane — owned by National Airlines, an Orlando, Fla.-based subsidiary of National Air Cargo — was carrying vehicles and other cargo, according to AP.

Summan, a first officer on the plane, lived in Canton with his wife Rajnit and their son Adarsh.

A memorial fund website set up by Mesa Airlines and well-wishers of the family said, “Rinku Summan was a pilot who was admired by his friends and colleagues throughout his entire aviation career. He met his wife, Rajnit, while training and they both began their airline careers together at Mesa Airlines, based in ORD. After the Mesa furloughs, Rinku and Rajnit had their first child, Adarsh, and Rinku went on to work for National Air Cargo.” spoke to DiAnn Dixon, who lives next door with her husband Michael, who remembered Rinku for his devotion to his family. She said when Summan would leave on trips, his son would frequently ask his mother “When is Daddy coming back?”

“(Summan) and his son were very close,” Dixon, who said her husband helped Summan build the playscape that adorns the Summans’ back yard, said Wednesday. “I’m still numb about it. It’s unfortunate that it happened and (Summan) will be missed.”

Summan’s wife Rajnit told AP that Summan had worked 21⁄2 years for National Air Cargo. She said she’d last spoken to Rinku on Sunday. “I told him to be safe,” she said.

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