Former NASP Executive Director Killed in Plane Crash

Gary Cohen was the sole occupant of a Cessna amphibious plane that crashed in Florida on September 18.

Gary Cohen was the sole occupant of a Cessna amphibious plane that crashed in Florida on September 18.

The former chief executive officer of the National Association of Specialty Pharmacy (NASP) died last week in a plane crash in Florida.

Gary Cohen, BSPharm, RPh, was the sole occupant of the 1971 Cessna 206 amphibious plane that crashed on Friday, September 18, 2015, in Spring Hill, Florida.

A witness arrived at the scene of the crash to find fuel leaking from the wing tanks, which prevented him from making any attempt at rescuing survivors, according to a report in the Tampa Bay Times.

“We unfortunately found a pretty horrific crash,” Hernando County Sheriff Al Neinhuis told the Times. “It’s hardly recognizable as an airplane.”

The crash took place shortly after 9 a.m. as Cohen, 56, was traveling from the Lake Keystone Seaplane Base to Orlando Executive Airport, according to the Times. He was supposed to land in Orlando just 20 minutes after the crash took place, the report stated.

According to data obtained by Tampa Bay Times from flightaware.com, the plane flew northwest over Hernando County after takeoff, rather than flying the required northeast route, before turning east.

Neinhuis told the Times that Cohen was attempting to land at nearby Brooksville-Tampa Bay Regional Airport at the time of the crash. While Cohen had been in contact with the airport control tower prior to crashing, it remains unclear as to whether or not he established an emergency.

Cohen was a founder of NASP, which launched in 2012 as a trade association representing stakeholders across the specialty pharmacy landscape, with members that include leading specialty pharmacies, pharmaceutical and biotechnology manufacturers, and ​​​more. The organization has grown to include 71 corporate members and more than 1200 individuals.

NASP released a statement earlier this year that Cohen had not served as CEO of the organization since February 15, 2015.