Photo by The Cody Enterprise
Two great grandsons of Buffalo Bill Cody along with a friend of the Cody’s were killed on Valentine’s Day when their small plane crashed in a marsh in the Fort Drum Conservation Area, about 20 miles west of Vero Beach, Fla. According to the Cody Enterprise newspaper, longtime Cody, Wyo. businessman Kit Cody, 67, his brother Barry Cody, 65, and Winter Haven, Fla. businessman Rob Kreiger, 65, were found around 10:30 a.m. Friday in the wreckage of Kit Cody’s Cessna 310 in a swampy area accessible only by helicopter or airboat.
The Federal Aviation Administration said the plane left Okeechobee on Feb. 14 on its way to Bartow when all contact with it was lost at around 4:35 p. m. in the midst of storms.
Once the crash site was located, the U.S. Coast Guard called in paramedics from the Indian River County Rescue to remove the victims. Assistant Fire Chief Brian Burkeen said it took several hours to get the three victims out of the swamp and his crews were still at the crash site as of 1:30 p.m. Friday.
Family members confirmed the accident.
Kit Cody’s son-in-law Bryan Edwards said the three men were using one of Kit’s two airplanes and had been “island hopping” in the Bahamas before the accident.
Rob Kreiger owned Kreiger Electric in Winter Haven. Fla. and the Cody brothers spent winters there.
Kit Cody owned the Green Gables Motel in Cody, Wyo. and previously owned other motels in Cody as well as around Orlando, Fla.
His brother Barry was a retired athletic director from Popular Bluff, Mo.
Kit Cody was known as an adventurous spirit and in September 2008, at age 63, made his 1000th parachute jump on Mentock Park in Cody in the midst of friends and well wishers.