ted stevens sean okeefe getty Former Sen. Ted Stevens dies in plane crash; Sean O'Keefe status unknownFormer Republican Senator Ted Stevens is confirmed dead in the Alaska plane crash that killed four other people, reports the AP. The status of former NASA chief Sean O’Keefe, who was also on the flight, is still unknown. The private plane crashed near Dillingham, Alaska, Monday night (Aug. 9) in a rugged stretch of Alaskan terrain, roughly 350 miles southwest of Anchorage as the crow flies.

]]>Sarah Palin took to Twitter to express her condolences. “Heartbreaking Bristol Bay plane crash. Alaska’s heart surrounds loved ones. More info coming in; pls pray for Dillingham rescue this morning,” she tweets. Stevens was the longest-serving Republican senator in U.S. history. He was appointed to the U.S. Senate in 1968 upon the death of then-senator E. L. Bartlett and was a member of the U.S. Senate until 2008. Our condolences to his family and friends, and the families and friends of all the victims. Follow Zap2it and Zap2it Andrea on Twitter and Zap2it on Facebook for the latest TV, movie and celebrity news. Photo credit: Getty Images