Flyer for life Graham White dies in ocean

Pilot Graham White.
Pilot Graham White.

A WAGGA man killed in an ultralight plane crash off the NSW south coast has been remembered as a gentleman and top flying instructor.

Graham White, a contractor at the Australian Airline Pilot Academy, who had tested cadets and instructors since 2010, was one of two men on a light plane that crashed into the ocean off Barlings Beach, south of Batemans Bay, about noon on Sunday.

The pair had taken off from nearby Moruya about 11.30am for Mr White to assess a learner pilot.

His body was recovered near the wreckage and flown to Moyura. He could not be revived.

Mr White, 60, had been an instructor and member of the Temora Aero Club for five years.

Club president Robert Maslin said Mr White had 20,000 flying hours.

“He was highly regarded in the aviation community,” Mr Maslin said.

Mr White was in Temora on Saturday evening for a function at Airpark Estate — he bought a block and planned to build a hangar and home there.

“He was somebody we were looking forward to settling in town,” Mr Maslin said.

“We’ve lost a real gentleman.”

Friend Mark Boller said Mr White was a “good generous bloke” who would help anybody willing to work.

“He devoted his life to flying,” Mr Boller said.

“He’s generous, knowledgable, dedicated and a good knock-around bloke.”

A search for the second man in the two-person Morgan Sierra “kit” plane was hindered yesterday by rough seas.