All six people on board a vintage red 1930s de Havilland biplane that vanished this week were confirmed dead Wednesday after the wreckage was found in a dense Australian forest.
They included the 68-year-old pilot Des Porter, who survived a crash in the same plane 58 years ago that killed his father and brother.
Sixteen helicopters and an aircraft had been scouring an area in southeastern Queensland state since late Monday when the Dragon DH-84 plane, reportedly one of only four in the world, sent a distress call.
"A rescue helicopter sighted the red biplane north of Borumba Dam," said the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), which was coordinating the search.
"The search team has confirmed there are no survivors."
Television footage of the crash site showed that the plane had disintegrated when it hit the ground near the dam, around 160 kilometres (100 miles) north of Brisbane.
AMSA spokesman Mike Barton, who knew Porter as a friend, told reporters it was a "high impact crash site".
"The plane is not in a condition that you would recognise as a plane," he said.
"So they have hit the ground exceedingly hard and the aircraft is fundamentally destroyed."
Porter had been raising funds for charity by giving scenic flights before the plane disappeared as it was heading back to its base in Caboolture, with his wife and four other close friends on board.
He radioed air traffic controllers on Monday afternoon saying he was having trouble fixing his position in cloudy conditions and his distress beacon was activated shortly afterwards.
Rescuers involved in the search said on Tuesday they believed the plane ran out of fuel in thick cloud and rain.
As an 11-year-old, Porter survived a crash in the same aircraft when it went down in a creek near Brisbane, killing his father and 13-year-old brother. He was plucked from the fuselage as the tide came in, reports said.
"He survived the accident himself and then he found the aeroplane some years later in a hangar all disassembled -- the very same aircraft -- and then they put it back together and lovingly restored it," Rod Robertson from the Gladstone Aero Club told ABC radio.
On Wednesday, Barton would not speculate on the cause of this week's crash, saying it was a matter for the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.
"Aviation can be a cruel child and you only have to make small mistakes and it can catch up on you," he said.