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Grandfather says Shelbyville family was headed to Virginia Military Institute when plane crashed

Mom, 2 children, foreign exchange student killed
Posted at 12:55 PM, Aug 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-15 13:14:59-04

FREDERICKSBURG, Va. (AP) — A Shelbyville woman, two of her four children and a foreign exchange student were among the six people killed in a small plane crash in Virginia, a family member said Saturday.

Fifty-two-year old Lisa Borinstein,  19-year-old Luke Borinstein and 15-year-old Emma Borinstein were killed in the crash along with a foreign exchange student, 15-year-old Maren Timmermann of Berlin, Germany, said Joseph Borinstein, the children's grandfather, speaking in a telephone interview Saturday.

PHOTOS | Smiles of family killed in Virginia plane crash

Joseph Borinstein said the family had chartered the plane to fly to Virginia, where his eldest grandson Drew is a senior at Virginia Military Institute. Emma's twin brother stayed at home in Shelbyville, Indiana, because he had football and basketball practice, he said.

"It's a sad thing, and we're just absolutely overwhelmed by this loss. It's unreal. Hard to express yourself," he said.

Chris Hoke, superintendent of Northwestern Consolidated School District of Shelby County released this statement Saturday afternoon:

"It is with profound sadness and a heavy heart that we announce having received official notification of the victims of the tragic accident in Fredricksburg, Va.   It has been confirmed that the victims of that fatal plane crash include: Emma Borinstein – TCHS sophomore, Luke Borinstein – Triton Central graduate, their mother Lisa Borinstein and Maren Timmerman – TCHS junior. As we pull together as a community to work through this tragic event, we will be offering grief counseling over the next several days to our students and staff. Triton Central is a close knit community and we will rally around the families and each other in the wake of this tragedy. The full breadth of our school campus and resources will be made available to the families and our community, as we begin the healing process together."

The two other people killed in Friday's crash were the pilot,  64-year-old William Hamerstadt of Carmel, and the owner of the plane, 73-year-old Robert Ross of Louisville, KY.

Investigators say the plane was trying to land Friday night when it climbed to 75 feet, veered left and struck a tree line before immediately catching on fire.

The Federal Aviation Administration, National Transportation Safety Board and the Virginia State Police are investigating the crash. 

NTSB Aircraft Investigator, Aaron McCarter, said they have obtained security camera footage from the airport and it is on its way to the NTSB's lab.

The plane will likely be transported to a secure facility Sunday. The preliminary crash report will take one week to complete.