It would be a great training tool for future pilots and those with a yearning for high air adventure.
"Search crews looked for the veteran balloonists in vain for a week before determining that their craft had plunged toward the water at 50 mph (80 kph) and they likely didn't survive."
Indeed. Most of us who fly aircraft realized in late September what had happened to the pair. Everyone was just playing nice for the families. Of course when you hit water at 50 mph you are going to perish. Striking water at that speed provides the exact same affect as driving your typical auto or cycle into a concrete wall at 50 mph.
Science and gravity are wonderful things. Their laws aren't as flexible as the activists and the thrill-seekers try to imagine.