Two with Texas ties among the dead in NYC helicopter crash

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NEW YORK (AP) Dallas firefighter Brian McDaniel and SMU graduate Trevor Cadigan are among the five people who died after a helicopter crashed into Manhattan’s East River, according to media reports Monday.

Carla Vallejos Blanco, a tourist from Argentina, and two employees of the helicopter company, Tristan Hill and Daniel Thompson, also died in the crash Sunday.

Pilot Richard Vance, who survived, said in an emergency radio transmission that the helicopter’s engine failed.

The pilot is heard saying "Mayday, mayday, mayday" in the moments before the crash on Sunday night.

The person at the other end of the transmission had trouble making out what the pilot was saying.

The pilot reported "an engine failure over the East River" and referenced a hotel.

The National Transportation Safety Board dispatched investigators on Monday.

The charter helicopter was hired for a photo shoot.

The pilot freed himself and was rescued by a tugboat.

Emergency divers had to remove the passengers from tight harnesses while they were upside down.