Robredo's pilot didn't use favorite plane

Posted at 08/20/12 6:09 PM

Capt. Jessup Bahinting. Photo courtesy of www.flyaviatour.com

MANILA, Philippines - The wife of Capt. Jessup Bahinting, the pilot of the ill-fated Piper Seneca, wondered why he was rushing to his flight to Naga, forgetting even to kiss her as he always did in the past.

Margaret Bahinting was very emotional and still in shock when she faced the media to describe her husband of 36 years.

On that fateful day on Saturday, she was at the Mactan Cebu International Airport hangar to send off her husband with the hope of seeing him in the next few days in Bacolod for a Church event. Bahinting is also a pastor. They have 3 children.

Bahinting, Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo and co-pilot Nepalese co-pilot Kshitiz Chand remain missing Monday after their Piper Seneca plane crashed off the waters of Masbate on Saturday afternoon.

Margaret said she remembers someone from the office of Robredo call her husband on Friday asking for a chartered flight to Naga.

Since it was a high-profile client, Bahinting supposedly cancelled plans the next day. She and her husband were supposed to spend their vacation at their beach resort in Cebu.

Robredo’s camp also supposedly picked Bahinting himself to fly the Cabinet secretary to Naga. Bahinting is the chairman and CEO of Aviatour, which offers chartered flight services. Aviatour is based in Mactan island, Cebu.

Margaret also wonders why her husband did not use his favorite plane, the Vickers V-1000.

Bahinting’s wife said she always feels afraid whenever he is out flying.

Even if the search has not found her husband yet, she said she remains hopeful but is prepared for the worst. – from a report by June Perez, dyAB Cebu