American skateboarder Josh Neuman killed in Iceland plane crash

Four bodies found using autonomous submarine and sonar

Graeme Massie
Los Angeles
,Stuti Mishra
Tuesday 08 February 2022 12:09 GMT

American skateboarder Josh Neuman was among four people killed when a small plane crashed into a lake in Iceland.

Authorities say that the 22-year-old was onboard the plane to create commercial content for the Belgian fashion brand Suspicious Antwerp, when the aircraft went missing.

Rescuers found it on Sunday in Lake Thingvallavatn, Iceland’s second-largest lake, with the help of an autonomous submarine and sonar technology.

Officials say that also on board the plane were Tim Alings, the company’s sponsorship manager, 27; Nicola Bellavia, a 32-year-old skydiver and social media influencer from Belgium, and pilot Haraldur Diego, 49.

There was a delay caused by poor weather in recovering the four bodies, which were found at depths of 157ft in the lake 30 miles east of Reykjavik.

“For the safety of divers we have to wait until the weather improves,” police chief Oddur Arnason told The Associated Press.

The Cessna 172 plane did not send out a distress signal when it vanished from radar on Thursday, which sparked a 1,000 person search and rescue effort.

Bram Boriau, a spokesperson for Suspicious Antwerp, said the group was capturing footage of Iceland on the flight.

“All persons present were hugely passionate about travel and content creation, hence these themes were the main focus of the trip,” Mr Boriau said.

Neuman’s family thanks his fans for their support on his official Instagram account.

“To all Josh’s supporters, thank you. Every single one of you meant so much to Josh. We have upcoming plans in store to keep his legacy alive for ever,” it stated.

The company confirmed on its Instagram account that an employee and two content creators were aboard the flight.

“We are enormously distressed by the news and our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends,” they stated.

“We are in close contact with them, as well as the authorities, and we’re doing everything we can to assist them during these difficult times.”

Neuman, 22, was best known for his YouTube channel, where he had amassed more than a million subscribers with his skateboarding content.

According to Neuman’s homepage, he began making videos at the age of 12 with his father’s video camera and later dropped out of college to pursue a career in extreme sports and filmmaking.

“In his 22 years on this earth, Josh didn’t just live life, he was life, and he lived every day to the fullest extent possible while being kind to everyone,” his family wrote as part of a statement posted to Instagram on Monday.

“As the world sheds a tear, we should know that he passed doing what he loved, having just experienced the Northern Lights in Iceland for the first time and commenting ‘this is the happiest day of my life’.”

Several people took to social media to express grief over Neuman’s passing.

“I was always so impressed that he chased his dreams to no end, so much so that he left UNC to pursue it full time, whether it be longboarding, skydiving, adventure, or whatever else,” wrote Matthew Travis, who said he went to high school with Neuman.

“Josh Neuman. Innovator, inspirer, uplifter, ground-breaker & a golden human. RIP,” podcaster Jake Hemphrey wrote.

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