Men who died in plane crash in Everglades identified

The two men who died when a Cessna 172 Skyhawk crashed in the Everglades shortly after takeoff Tuesday evening have been identified.

Khadim Kebe, 37, of Texas, and Mohamed Badenjki, 51, of North Miami Beach, were found dead Wednesday morning, the wrecked single-engine plane floating in the water near Mile Marker 28 on Interstate 75, the Broward Sheriff’s Office said. A small brush fire was burning near the plane when they were found.

Both men were certified pilots, according to Federal Aviation Administration records. Kebe’s commercial pilot certificate was issued in 2021 and Badenjki’s in 2022.

The Sheriff’s Office in its news release Thursday afternoon did not release additional details about the crash or the Homicide Unit’s investigation.

The plane, owned by Florida General Aviation, departed from North Perry Airport at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and crashed 13 minutes later, making it about 29 miles, according to FlightAware. It made multiple brief flights from North Perry Airport and back earlier in the day Tuesday and in the past week.

Broward Sheriff’s Fire Rescue Battalion Chief Michael Kane said Wednesday that the company reported the plane missing about 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, and first responders searched the area by airboat and found it less than an hour later.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating.