A wealthy West Virginia coal mine owner, his daughter and five others died when their helicopter crashed into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of the Bahamas en route to Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
The helicopter crashed near the island of Walker’s Cay, local media reported on Thursday. Aboard were Chris Cline, a billionaire mining entrepreneur from West Virginia, his daughter, and five other people a helicopter mechanic from Florida. The helicopter was reportedly returning to Florida due to the possible illness of someone on board.
Cline founded Foresight Energy in 2006 to focus on high sulfur and high Btu coal, earning Bloomberg’s endorsement as “the New King Coal” for his success in the industry, and sold most of his stake in the company for $1.4 billion in 2015. Cline died with an estimated net worth of $1.8 billion. He had two sons and two daughters and had dated Elin Nordegren, Tiger Woods’ ex-wife, after divorcing his second wife.
West Virginia Governor Jim Justice confirmed reports of Cline’s death on Twitter. The two had worked together at Pioneer Fuel before Cline started his latest venture.