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Engine of JFK Jr.'s airplane being brought to Williamsport for inspection

By Associated Press, 07/27/99

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. -- The engine from John F. Kennedy Jr.'s aircraft will be disassembled here by its manufacturer, Textron Lycoming, under supervision of the National Transportation Safety Board.

Inspectors will examine whether any evidence points to malfunctions or defects that existed before the aircraft crashed into the ocean July 16 off Martha's Vineyard, Mass. Kennedy, his wife Carolyn Bessette, and sister-in-law, Lauren Bessete, were killed.

"It's common practice to do engine tear-downs," NTSB spokesman Paul Schlamm said of plans to take apart the fuel-injected nonturbocharged engine used in Kennedy's 1995 Piper Saratoga airplane.

The procedure typically is performed at the manufacturer's facility because those firms have the "proper equipment and tools for handling the engine," added Schlamm.

Dismantling the engine will take several days but it will be several months before the results are made public, he said.

Textron Lycoming officials declined comment and referred inquiries to the NTSB.


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