Music producer, family members killed in DR plane crash
By Richard Pérez-Peña
A chartered jet bound for Miami crashed minutes after takeoff Wednesday night in the Dominican Republic, killing all nine people on board, including a prominent Puerto Rican music producer and members of his family.
The Gulfstream IV-Sp jet crashed while attempting an emergency landing at the International Airport of the Americas in Santo Domingo, the capital, officials told reporters.
The operator of the plane, Helidosa Aviation Group, identified one of the victims as José Ángel Hernández. Music industry news outlets and Spanish-language news media identified him as the Puerto Rican music producer known as Flow La Movie.
Helidosa said in a statement that the other passengers killed were Debbie Von Marie Jiménez García, Jayden Hernández, Kellyan Hernández Pena, Yeilianys Jeishlimar Meléndez Jiménez, Jassiel Yabdiel Silva and Veronica Estrella. Two crew members, Luis Alberto Eljuri and Víctor Emilio Herrera, were also killed, the plane operator said.
Music industry news outlets identified Jiménez García as the 38-year-old producer’s wife, and said that their child had been killed in the crash.
People Magazine and some local news outlets reported that Estrella’s uncle was Eduardo Estrella, president of the Dominican Republic’s senate.
The plane company said that one of the seven passengers had Dominican nationality and that the others were foreigners.
Hernández was best known for producing “Te Boté,” a song that became a hit on Latin radio in the United States three years ago.
His production company did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Representatives for Helidosa and Estrella’s office also could not immediately be reached for comment.
Ricardo Montaner, an Argentine Venezuelan pop singer, and Margarita Cedeño, a former vice president of the Dominican Republic, were among the public figures across Latin America who mourned the tragedy Wednesday night.
“Peace to their souls and strength to their family,” Cedeño wrote on Twitter.