Crashed plane removed for study

Crashed plane removed for study
J. D. Sumner
J. D. Sumner
Captain Stuart
Captain Stuart

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - NTSB and FAA officials just moved the plane from the crash site here at the southwest Georgia regional airport Monday afternoon. The plane is headed to a facility near Atlanta for further investigation.

The 2002 Lancair IV plane was taking off around 2:40 Saturday when it crashed just a few minutes later. Officials tell us the plane did not climb above the trees before crashing. The investigators expect to have a preliminary report ready in the next week or two.

We've heard a little more about the three victims.  30 year old Brittany Kerfoot was a second grade teacher in Albany.  Britt Knight, A local business owner and owner of the plane was 40, and leaves behind two young children.  48 year old Kevin Coalson was a retired trooper.

We spoke to a representative from the school district and a friend of Coalson's, and they say the last few days have been especially tough.

"It's a blow for our organization, professionally because we've lost a good teacher. It's a blow emotionally because we've lost a friend and family member," J. D. Sumner of the Dougherty Co. School System.    "She was just truly an asset to our organization and it will be a huge loss for us."

"People like Ms. Kerfoot, they have a light. They have a light that just emanates from them that's easily shared with others and when that light is extinguished, it affects a lot of people," said Sumner.

"He served the state, and he served his communities in this area in South Georgia and it breaks your heart to know that he can't enjoy the fruits of his labor," said Captain Ralph Stuart of the Sumter County Sheriff's Office, speaking of  Kevin Coalson.

"Kevin was just a consummate professional. He was a good guy. The room lit up right when he walked in. He kind of demanded your attention," said Captain Ralph Stuart.

Captain Stuart with the Sumter County Sheriff's office knew Coalson through school, and from working together through the years. "It swept my feet out from under me. I remember calling some of our friends in law-enforcement that was close friends with Kevin and there just wasn't much conversation. We were all taken back and he is truly going to be missed." 

Students at school were greeted with stuffed animals to hold, and while the day will be tough for them, it will be especially tough for her fellow teachers.
"They are a close knit family, and to have someone taking so quickly and so tragically, it's a real blow to them as well," said Sumner.

Through friends, family, and countless others around Albany and beyond, the memories and legacies of these three victims will live on well past the tragic ending of their lives.

Nearly six years ago, Kevin Coalson had an emergency landing at the Southwest Georgia Regional Airport, when he detected a problem with his left main landing gear. Coalson circled the airport for several minutes until the gear was secured.   He landed safely at the airport that afternoon.

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