Family and friends remember Pebb Enterprise employees killed in - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Family and friends remember Pebb Enterprise employees killed in jet crash

BOCA RATON, Fla. - The plane crash in Ohio changed the lives of many south Floridians.

Seven employees from Pebb Enterprises in west Boca Raton died when the private jet crashed while landing near an Akron airport.

Megan Smoot has to fight back tears thinking about her mom, Diane.

"We were close, we went out to dinner all the time," she says.

Megan says her mom was the only member of her family in south Florida. Her dad has moved away and her twin brother is stationed at an Air Force base in Guam.

She says her mom was very excited to go on the business trip using the private jet and had talked about it for weeks ahead of time.

She's thankful she spoke with her mom Tuesday morning before the crash, but now wishes she had spent more time with her in person.

"I just want people to know that no matter what, don't go to bed angry with the person you love. Make sure you talk to the people you love because you never know when they're going to be gone, they could be gone tomorrow."

The tears give way to a smile as Megan opens up about her relationship with her mother.

"She was a giving person, she always looked out for me no matter what, even though I got on her nerves a lot of the time," she admits.

She's set up an account online collecting donations to help cover the costs associated with travel and missing work.

Another person lost in the wreckage is Thomas Virgin. He was a married father of a 4-month-old daughter.

Ryan Lynch was Virgin's college roommate at the University of Colorado. He heard the news early Wednesday morning. He says he immediately thought of Virgin's wife and daughter.

Lynch started a gofundme account online to raise money to place a memorial plaque in the garden of their old fraternity house. The donations exceeded expectations in one day, and now he says he'll donate the extra money to a college fund for Virgin's daughter, Victoria. 

"Victoria may have lost her father, but she has dozens of uncles all across this country that will love and protect her," Lynch says of the support he's seeing for the family.

He says Virgin worked multiple jobs to pay for out of state tuition at the University of Colorado. He hopes his daughter doesn't have to struggle like he did.

Virgin eventually moved closer to home and finished his degree at Florida Atlantic University, where he met his wife.

Lynch and other fraternity brothers are flying to Florida to attend a memorial for Virgin Friday at 1:00 p.m. at St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church.

There are two pages online collecting money for the Virgin family: tori_tuition

Friends are remembering Nick Weaver for his quick wit and love for life.

They say the New York native was a huge sports fan and was the captain of his high school hockey team which won a state championship.
"I'll always remember Nick as a great teammate, very well liked, a great captain as far as working with the coaching staff," says his former high school hockey coach John Cunningham.

He leaves behind a wife, Robin.

Gary Shapiro was the father to two daughters, 3-years and 2-months-old. He lived in Boca Raton with his wife, Corey. His family set up an account to help care for the children.

Diana Suriel was the mother to a 15-month-old daughter. Her husband's company has set up an account collecting donations.

Jared Weiner was the grandson of Pebb Enterprise's founder. The Boca Raton resident leaves behind a wife. Friends from his temple say he was an outstanding man with a rising career.

Ori Rom, from Delray Beach, leaves behind a wife.

Copyright 2015 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Powered by Frankly

1100 Banyan Blvd.
West Palm Beach, FL 33401

FCC Public File
EEO Report
Closed Captioning

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 Raycom Media. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.