French billionaire and National Assembly member Olivier Dassault has reportedly been killed in a helicopter crash in the northern Calvados town of Toques. The pilot of the private aircraft also died in the crash.
President Emmanuel Macron has extended his condolences over the death of the billionaire member of parliament, hailing his achievements as a businessman and serviceman, also stressing that Dassault never stopped serving his country.
Dassault was the youngest of industrialist Serge Dassault’s four children, who inherited their father’s wealth when he died in May 2018. Olivier Dassault was president of strategy and development at Dassault Groupe, the family-controlled aerospace and software conglomerate.
The Dassaults also own Le Figaro, France’s national newspaper, as well as vineyards and other major assets. Serge Dassault’s father, Marcel Dassault, founded Dassault Aviation and started out making propellers for World War I planes.
Dassault had traveled to Calvados for the weekend, where he owns a holiday home in Deauville, and was set to return to Paris on Sunday by helicopter, Le Parisien reported, citing Senator Olivier Paccaud.
Dassault represented Oise department in the French National Assembly and was a member of The Republicans party, formerly known as the Union for a Popular Movement, which holds 105 seats in the 577-seats assembly.
The billionaire also ran the Dassault Group business, known for being the manufacturer of civilian and military aircraft, including the Dassault Rafale fighter jet, which is used by the air forces of several countries.
The latest titan of French industry to die in an aircraft crash follows the October 2014 death of Christophe de Margerie, chief executive of oil major Total, whose corporate jet collided with a snowplow in Moscow and burst into flames.
Sputnik / RT. com / ABC Flash Point Aviation News 2021.