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Woodmere’s Francisco “Frank” Knipping-Diaz dies in upstate New York plane crash


Woodmere resident Francisco Knipping-Diaz, 61, known to family and friends as “Frank,” died Aug. 18 in the plane crash of his Cessna 303 that also possibly resulted in the death of upstate homeowner Gerard Bocker, 61, an official identification is yet to be made.

Knipping-Diaz’s twin-engine plane crashed into the south side of a two-story house on South Smith Street Road in Union Vale, authorities said.

The plane which had taken off from Orange County Airport had stopped to refuel at the supply track of Sky Acres in La Grangeville, near the town of Poughkeepsie. It then experienced engine trouble, authorities said and it crashed shortly after 4 p.m., on the house that is roughly six miles away from Poughkeepsie. The plane’s destination was Republic Airport in Farmingdale.

Passengers Eduardo Tio, 50, also of Woodmere, and Teofilio Antonio Diaz Pratt, 52, of the Dominican Republic were injured in the crash. None of the injuries are considered life-threatening. Bocker’s daughters, were also at home when the crash occurred. Hannah, 21, was critically injured and Sarah, 30, also sustained not life-threatening injuries. Neighbors said that Bocker's wife was not at home and their son was in California.

Knipping was considered a prominent Dominican lawyer with the Upper Manhattan law firm of Knipping-Diaz & Associates Inc. He earned his law degree from Touro College in Central Islip and a bachelor’s from Queens College.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating.