Couple Featured on HGTV Dies In a Tragic Savannah Plane Crash
A Savannah, Georgia-area plane crash on Monday, August 28, was fatal for the pilot, Randy Hunter of Tyrone, and two passengers, husband and wife Byron and Catherine Cocke.
The charter plane was en route to Cobb County International Airport-McCollum Field from Savannah International Airport when it encountered mechanical issues and crashed near the Ogeechee River in Bryan County, reportsThe Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Catherine, 39, an interior designer, and Byron, 42, co-CEO of CF Real Estate Services, had been featured on the HGTV showMy Big Amazing Renovation. The 2011 episode, titled "Going Big in Georgia" followed the renovation of the family's home.
The couple leaves behind five children, who are currently being cared for by extended family, says a statement by Byron's business partner, CF Real Estate Services co-CEO Brett Finkelstein. A portion reads:
"Our co-CEO, Byron Cocke, and his wife, Catherine, passed away in the crash of a small plane. We are devastated by this tragic loss. They were philanthropic, creative, intelligent, caring, and entrepreneurial. Byron and Catherine were devoted to their five beautiful children, who are being cared for by their extended family. … Working with Byron was a joy. He personified love of family, love of company, and love for co-workers."
Savannah's Downtown Neighborhood Associate Board also mourned the loss in a statement, saying, "The Savannah community has lost a shining light in this beautiful couple and while our hearts are heavy, we ask for prayers for their surviving five children."
The pilot's wife, Kristen Hunter, and two daughters are dealing with their own devastating loss. "Randy had a passion for his family and all things related to aviation and loved flying," Kristen said in a statement released by Fayette County law firm Sanchez Hayes & Associates. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the Cocke family who also lost two beloved and cherished family members in this tragic accident."
According to theJournal, a spokesperson for the National Transportation Safety Board said a full investigation of the site of the crash will be followed by a complete review of the aircraft to determine if there was a malfunction.
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