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Profile: Frank Monaco

Frank Monaco was a participant or observer in the following events:

The Flight 93 crash site.The Flight 93 crash site. [Source: Associated Press]Numerous individuals who see the Flight 93 crash site notice a lack of plane wreckage there:
bullet Jon Meyer, a reporter with WJAC-TV, will later describe: “I was able to get right up to the edge of the crater.… All I saw was a crater filled with small, charred plane parts. Nothing that would even tell you that it was the plane.… There were no suitcases, no recognizable plane parts, no body parts. The crater was about 30 to 35 feet deep.” (Newseum et al. 2002, pp. 148)
bullet According to Mark Stahl, who goes to the crash scene: “There’s a crater gouged in the earth, the plane is pretty much disintegrated. There’s nothing left but scorched trees.” (Associated Press 9/11/2001)
bullet Frank Monaco of the Pennsylvania State Police will comment: “If you would go down there, it would look like a trash heap. There’s nothing but tiny pieces of debris. It’s just littered with small pieces.” (Silver et al. 9/12/2001)
bullet Scott Spangler, a photographer with a local newspaper, will recall: “I didn’t think I was in the right place. I was looking for a wing or a tail. There was nothing, just this pit.… I was looking for anything that said tail, wing, plane, metal. There was nothing.” (Newseum et al. 2002, pp. 149)
bullet Paula Pluta, a local resident who headed to the site promptly after the crash occurred, will describe seeing “[j]ust a big crater that looked… like something had gone into it, and it rolled the dirt up around and buried itself.” “I’m looking around for plane wreckage and there’s nothing,” she will recall, adding: “I just stood there in amazement. Where did this thing go?” (McMillan 2014, pp. 107)
bullet Dave Berkebile, another local resident, arrives at the site shortly after Pluta does. However, he cannot see any large airplane parts there. “The biggest chunk of debris he identified,” according to journalist and author Tom McMillan, “was a cooling unit that was maybe eight inches by 12 inches.” (McMillan 2014, pp. 107)
bullet According to Ron Delano, a local who rushes to the scene after hearing about the crash: “If they hadn’t told us a plane had wrecked, you wouldn’t have known. It looked like it hit and disintegrated.” (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 9/12/2001)
bullet Gabrielle DeRose, a news anchor with KDKA-TV, views the crash site from a hill overlooking it. She will comment: “It was very disturbing to think all the remains just disintegrated…. There were no large pieces of airplane, no human remains, no baggage.” (Sylvester and Huffman 2002, pp. 160-161)
bullet Local assistant volunteer fire chief Rick King, who sees the crater at the crash site, will say, “Never in my wildest dreams did I think half the plane was down there.” King sends his men into the woods to search for the plane’s fuselage, but they keep coming back and telling him: “Rick. There’s nothing.” (Longman 2002, pp. 216)
Bob Craig of the FBI’s evidence-gathering team will explain what is supposed to have happened when Flight 93 hit the ground. “Turn the picture of the second plane hitting the World Trade Center on its side, and, for all intents and purposes, the face of the building is the strip mine in Shanksville [where Flight 93 crashed],” he will say. (Longman 2002, pp. 260) When the plane’s two black boxes are later discovered (see September 13-14, 2001), they are reportedly found 15 and 25 feet inside the crater. (Longman 2002, pp. 217; Perl 5/12/2002)


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