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Top Ten of 2011: Gay Marriage, Plane Crash

RYE, N.Y. - As we turn the page on 2011, the Daily Rye is looking back, in no particular order, at the top ten stories of the past year. Be on the lookout as we recap and update the top stories in Rye in 2011 in the coming days.

Plane Crashes Near Westchester Airport

A small airplane crash made headlines last summer when a Manhattan man reported issues before attempting to land, killing himself and three others. The small single-engine jet crashed near an MBIA office building at 113 New King St. in Armonk soon after taking off on the afternoon of June 18 from the Westchester County Airport.

The victims were identified as Keith Weiner, 63, wife Lisa Weiner, 51, daughter Isabel Weiner, 14, and Isabel's friend Lucy Walsh, 14.

Reports said that Keith Weiner was piloting the jet when he experienced a mechanical failure, causing him to radio that he will be turning around to land. On his way back, the jet approached the ground too quickly and clipped nearby trees before crashing and bursting into flames.

The plane took off about 1:05 p.m. for Montauk and was circling back to land with engine trouble before crashing in the wooded area behind MBIA Inc. headquarters at 113 King Street at 1:10 p.m.

There has not been a major airplane crash reported at the county airport since.

First Gay Marriage in Rye

John Victor Self and Chris Fraley shared their first kiss as husband and husband after City of Rye marriage officer Susan Morison made their union official July 24, the same day the Marriage Equality Act went into effect. Self and Fraley's union made them the first same-sex couple to marry in Rye.

Although most clerk offices were closed throughout the state on the 24th. Self and Fraley went to Greenburg earlier that day to obtain their marriage license and returned to Rye to have Rye marriage officer Susan Morison preside over their marriage.

Self and Fraley, who have been together since 2003, had a wedding ceremony in St. Barts in 2008 and a civil ceremony while honeymooning in South Africa.

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