Captain Joshua Sanders, of the Rutherford County Fire Department, told a press conference on Saturday night that they “were no longer looking … for living victims.”
“Our efforts have gone from being a rescue effort to being a recovery effort right now,” Sanders said. “These efforts will continue through the night. “
Authorities identified the seven victims on Saturday night as William J. Lara, Gwen S. Lara, Jennifer J. Martin, David L. Martin, Jessica Walters, Jonathan Walters and Brandon Hannah and said they were all from Brentwood, Tennessee. The Remnant Fellowship Church in Brentwood told Nashville ABC affiliate WKRN that some members of their church were involved in the plane crash. The names identified by authorities are all members of the church’s leadership team, including former actor William Joe Lara and his wife, regime author Gwen Shamblin Lara.
Ashley McDonald, spokesperson for the County of Rutherford government, told reporters at a press briefing on Saturday evening that local authorities were not sure who was on board. She said they knew who the plane was registered to, but “at this time we will not release this information as it is part of the ongoing investigation.”
Authorities first searched by boat and in shallow water and then began diving operations as well, Sanders said.
“We have identified several potential targets for diving operations which will resume in the morning,” said Sanders. “Crews will continue to work through the night to identify the remains of the plane and other evidence to assist the NTSB in its investigation. “
NTSB and FAA investigators responded to the scene.
The Rutherford County Fire Department urged boaters and civilian drones to avoid the area during the crash site investigation.
ABC News’ Mina Kaji and Matt Foster contributed to this report.