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Case Closed on Couple Missing in ’77 Air Crash

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The case of a missing Thousand Oaks couple whose plane was found last month, 19 years after it went down in Northern California, was closed Saturday after officials in Humboldt County searching the site for a second time were unable to find any remains of the pilot, Norman Wascher, or his wife, Beverly.

“I’ve never seen a wreck like this,” said Humboldt County Coroner Glenn Sipma, who joined members of the Humboldt County sheriff’s posse for the morning search on a steep slope in Scotia, a small lumber town south of Eureka.

“We found the transponder. We found all the things we were supposed to find as far as the plane goes,” Sipma said. “But we found absolutely no traces of [the Waschers] whatsoever.”

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The plane was reported missing on June 19, 1977. Neither Norman Wascher, a purchasing agent with a Thousand Oaks developer, nor his wife, a mother of three who was involved in PTA activities, has been heard from since.

Friends say the couple were returning to the Santa Barbara Airport after visiting a daughter at Humboldt State University when their plane went down.

The plane was discovered Aug. 28 by foresters from Pacific Lumber Co. on land belonging to the lumber company.

Saturday’s search turned up a small number of personal belongings, Humboldt County Sheriff’s Deputy Roy Reynolds said. Those items will be turned over to family members.

“At this time the investigation is complete and the Sheriff’s Department will not be returning to the site,” Reynolds said.

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