Helicopter Crash That Killed Access Bank CEO, Herbert Wigwe and Five Others

The sudden death of Access bank CEO, which is known as the largest bank in Nigeria still remains a shock wave in the heart of many, as he was known as a man of impact and influence. May the soul rest in peace.

Herbert Wigwe, his wife and son were among the six that reportedly died in the tragic crash in a Friday night helicopter crash in a remote part of the Mojave desert along the California-Nevade border

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, known as the director of the World Trade Organization was reportedly the first to release four of the victims in the helicopter crash, who were identified as, Herbert Wigwe, his wife, Doreen Chizoba, and son Chizi, former group chairman of Nigeria’s stock exchange Abimola Ogunbanjo.

The helicopter involved in the fatal crash took off around 8.45pm on Friday from Palm Springs airport in California heading towards Boulder City, Nevada, approximately 26 miles (41km) southeast of Las Vegas, where this year’s Super Bowl is taking place on Sunday. It is said that the aircraft was an Airbus Helicopters EC-130.

As per the San Bernardino county sheriff department, authorities were notified of the crash around 10.10pm on Friday night. All six individuals on board, including two helicopter pilots, tragically lost their lives, although their identities have not been disclosed yet.

An investigation is underway by the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration to determine the cause of the crash.

CNN mentioned that investigators intended to revisit the crash site on Sunday to capture footage with a drone. According to witnesses, the helicopter ignited after the crash. The weather conditions at the time of the crash included rain and a wintry mix.

“I am shocked and deeply distressed by the news of the passing of Mr Herbert Wigwe, a distinguished banker, humanitarian, and entrepreneur, and Mr Abimbola Ogunbanjo, the former group chairman of the Nigerian Exchange Group … along with members of the Wigwe family – Herbert’s wife, [Doreen] Chizoba, and son, Chizi,” Nigeria’s president, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, expressed in a statement. This passing is an immense tragedy that is truly shocking and difficult to grasp. My heartfelt sympathies go out to the Wigwe and Ogunbanjo families, the business community, and all those affected by this tragic event.

As per information on Access Bank’s website, Wigwe assumed the role of managing director and chief executive in 2014, having initially joined the bank in 2002. Access Bank holds the top position as the biggest bank in Nigeria.

“Today and always, let us remember that life is a precious gift – a chance to breathe, feel, love, experience and connect,” Wigwe expressed in a post on X in January 2024. Let’s celebrate this blessing by living intentionally, compassionately, and appreciatively, cherishing each moment. Let us remember to make the most of our time.

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