Memorial scheduled for Washington plane crash victims - Greenville, NC | News | Weather | Sports - WNCT.com

Memorial scheduled for Washington plane crash victims

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A Washington couple killed in a small plane crash will be remembered at a memorial service Wednesday afternoon.

The service for Dr. Dennis O'Neal and his wife Debbie will be held at 1 p.m. at Rock Springs Center in Greenville.

Friends and family also gathered to remember the couple Tuesday night outside the Washington Eye Center where Dr. O'Neal worked.


A Washington Eye Doctor and his wife were killed in small plane crash on Easter Sunday.

On Sunday, Dr. Dennis O'Neal and his wife, Debbie, died when their single-engine plane crashed in a residential neighborhood.

Dr. Nisha Mehta, who works at Washington Eye Center, spent Sunday waiting by the phone, after hearing about a plane crash.

"He had gone to the mountains for the weekend and we found out that, that was the time he was supposed to be coming back from the mountains around the same time that the crash occurred," said Metha.

The plane went down in Winston-Salem, just before one o'clock. Authorities say it was heading to Washington. A trip the couple had made many times before. When co-workers, like Mehta got the news confirming it the O'Neal's plane, they were in disbelief.

The optometrist and his wife leave behind three adult children.

Mehta says though it was difficult to come to work on Monday, everyone at the Washington Eye Center knew they had to put the patients first, as O'Neal would have done.

"I use him as an inspiration, because he was very loyal to his patients here, and he really truthfully from the bottom of his heart, cared for each one of those patients. We can only hope to follow his footsteps and we'll try and do that," said Mehta.

The Washington Eye Center is holding a candlelight memorial on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. The public is welcomed to attend.

The plane didn't hit anyone or any buildings, but it did catch fire and was destroyed. The FAA says the plane was a Lancair LC-42.

The plane took off from Wilkesboro, and had about 215 miles to go until it reached Washington.


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