Loretta Fuddy, the Hawaiian health official who approved President Obama’s birth certificate as being authentic, has been killed in a small plane crash.
The plane was transporting eight passengers and the pilot. It crashed on Wednesday about half mile from the Hawaiian island of Molokai in the water, stated the Maui Fire Department. Fuddy was the only fatality. She had served as Hawaii state health director since January of 2011. Tom Matsuda, who is the interim executive director of Hawaii’s health insurance exchange, acknowledged that Fuddy had perished in the crash.
Fuddy was on the plane along with her deputy health director. They were among the nine people aboard the small plane. The airline’s owner says the plane crash was caused by engine failure.
A Coast Guard petty officer stated that a Coast Guard helicopter was able to pick up three passengers from of the water while Maui fire crews rescued five people. There was one individual who swam to the shoreline. It is not known which group Fuddy’s body was found to be with.
Hawaiian Gov. Neil Abercrombie placed Fuddy as the state’s director of health back in 2011, topping off a career that had lasted over 30 years in the public health field. By state ruling, whoever is heading up the Health Department also serves as Kalawao County mayor. This was the reason Fuddy was traveling to Molokai.
Fuddy, age 65, ended up making national news back in April of 2011 when she approved that President Obama’s birth certificate was authentic. President Obama had asked for the release in order to quiet assertions by so-called “birthers” and their movement. They believed that he was born in Kenya and therefore he had no right to be the President of The United States.
After the crash, the pilot of the single-engine turboprop Cessna Grand Caravan stated just after he took off from the airport, there was disastrous engine failure. He did all he could to try and bring the plane down safely and get everyone out of the aircraft.
The cause of the engine failure has not yet been found out. The National Transportation Safety Board had been brought in. They were starting their investigation of the plane crash. NTSB spokesman Eric Weiss stated that looking at where the location of the crash was, it was extremely unlikely the plane would ever be recovered.
Hawaiian Gov. Neil Abercrombie declared that the Hawaiian people and also the state government all had had their hearts broken. He explained that Fuddy was a person that was deeply respected and loved by the entire state. She was a person who was utterly dedicated, selfless and definitely committed to all her co-workers in the Department of Health and also to the Hawaiian people. She had a wide range of knowledge, and her advice and counsel was always given from her heart as much as from her vast amount of experience.
It sounds like this was a very special lady, and so it is even more tragic that this Hawaiian official who approved President Obama’s birth certificate has died.
By Kimberly Ruble