Air New Zealand can now advise the names of its staff who are missing after our Airbus A320 on lease to XL Airways from Germany was lost in the Mediterranean Sea this morning.
The missing Air New Zealand staff were on board the aircraft as observers during a pre-acceptance flight before its return to Air New Zealand. They are:
Captain Brian Horrell, who is aged 52 years and lives in Auckland.
Murray White, who is an engineer aged 37 years and lives in Auckland.
Michael Gyles, who is an engineer aged 49 years and lives in Christchurch.
The name of the fourth Air New Zealand observer will be released later today once all next of kin have been notified.
Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Rob Fyfe says he has now spoken to the partners of each of the missing men.
"This is an unbelievably difficult time for the families of those who are missing. I conveyed to them my deepest sympathies and those of all Air New Zealanders as we await further information on their loved ones. I was also able to re-assure them that Air New Zealand is receiving the full support of the New Zealand Government and the Search and Rescue authorities in France and we are confident that everything is being done to locate those still missing."
NOTE: The content of all Air New Zealand media releases are accurate at the time of issue, as stated at the top of each release. For updates on any changes, please contact Air New Zealand.
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