February 4, 2008
Jeanette Symons, the founder of Ascend Communications and Zhone Technologies Inc. (Nasdaq: ZHNE), is assumed to be one of two fatalities in a plane crash that took place in Maine on Friday.
Medical examiners recovered two bodies, presumed to be Symons and her 10-year-old son, from the crash site, the Boston Globe reported over the weekend. As of this morning, the remains had not yet been identified officially, pending DNA test results.
Symons, 45, owned the Cessna Citation C-525 that crashed near Maine's Augusta State Airport. She and her son, Balan, are presumed to have been the only people on board.
The cause of the crash wasn't immediately clear. Reports say the plane lost radio contact shortly after taking off from Maine, en route to Symons's home in Colorado.
Symons had left telecom to found Industrious Kid, which operates imbee.com, a social network for children ages 8 to 14.
Zhone chairman and CEO Mory Ejabat issued the following statement today:
We all share in the shock and sadness over the tragic loss of our friend and colleague Jeanette Symons and her young son Balan. Jeanette was a devoted mother, a committed and dedicated business partner and a caring friend. She will be deeply missed. Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with her family.Jeanette’s vision was formative in launching Zhone and her influence is at the core of our company’s foundation. She was an important mentor to many at Zhone and her drive, assuredness and intellect were an inspiration to us all. Jeanette lived life abundantly and never did anything halfway. The contributions she made both socially and to the field of telecommunications will endure indefinitely. We celebrate a brilliant life and deeply grieve that she wasn’t with us longer.
— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading
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