November 19, 2012

Portland man, 2 other plane crash victims had promising futures

As the federal investigation of the Owls Head crash continues, a UMaine official says the three fraternity brothers brought 'light and energy' to the campus.

By Dennis Hoey
Staff Writer

and Beth Quimby
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 1)

"Marcel texted my son and said they were going to be flying over the farm on Friday," Spear recalled Sunday. "He said they wanted to see it from a different perspective.

"They circled around several times and we waved to them," Spear said.

He said he regarded Rugini as his "adopted son." He was attending the University of Maine on a full scholarship and was majoring in sustainable agriculture.

Spear had hoped that Rugini would work for him full time on the farm after he graduated next spring. "I looked at him as the future of our farm. Marcel was a natural at farming," Spear said.

He arranged to host a gathering of farm hands and friends in Nobleboro on Sunday night. It gave them a chance to comfort one another over their loss. "Marcel had such a bright future. He was an outstanding person who meant the world to us," Spear said.

David Cheney, whose family is from Beverly, Mass., was president of the Lambda Chi fraternity. He was majoring in business. Cheney attended Hannigan's college graduation and family party.

"He was a really great kid, a funny person who was always joking around," said a childhood friend, Allison O'Brien of Beverly.

The driver of the pickup truck involved in the crash, Stephen Turner, 62, of Camden, was not hurt and has not been charged.

Knox airport manager Jeff Northgraves said drivers there are allowed to cross runways as long as they have training from airport officials and a vehicle that's equipped with a radio.

Turner is a local pilot who has been trained and had a radio in the truck, Northgraves said.

Knox's regional airport does not have a control tower or anyone monitoring aircraft or vehicle traffic, he said. 

Staff Writer Beth Quimby can be contacted at 791-6363 or at: 

Staff Writer Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:


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