Former NASA chief, son survive Alaska plane crash

August 11, 2010 By MIKE SCHNEIDER , Associated Press Writer

(AP) -- Former NASA chief Sean O'Keefe and his teenage son survived a small plane crash in Alaska that killed former Sen. Ted Stevens, his company said Tuesday.

Defense contractor EADS North America confirmed in a statement "with a great sense of relief" that O'Keefe and his son, Kevin, survived Monday night's crash near a remote fishing village in Alaska.

O'Keefe, 54, is the current CEO of the U.S.-based division of the European company.

Five people, including Stevens, were killed in the . Four people survived.

O'Keefe was a federal budget official before he joined at the end of 2001. His three years at NASA included the 2003 Columbia shuttle disaster. He left in 2005 to become chancellor of Louisiana State University.

Glenn Mahone, a former NASA spokesman, said he had talked to O'Keefe's family on Tuesday.

"They are banged up pretty badly," Mahone said of O'Keefe and his son.

"There were some broken bones and scrapes," he said. "The important thing is they are both alive."

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