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Local pilots discuss their camaraderie

Burke, Texas (KETK) - Many are mourning the deaths of the pilot and passenger in Thursday's deadly plane crash in Tyler.

But, it really hits pilots hard they are a tightly-knit community.

They may not be close when they are up in the air, but on the ground pilots share a bond.

There is a sense of camaraderie any time two or more gather in one place.

"They talk about maintenance on their airplanes, the takeoffs and landings, and the wind conditions and they just become fast friends," said Gary Letny, Angelina County Airport Interim Manager.

At the Angelina County Airport pilots often visit the airport café and wile there, pilots from all over the area talk shop.

"It is definitely a community, once you come out here you just feel at home, you're just one of us," said Carol Baird, Airport Café employee. 

Many pilots belong to aviation groups, which serve the community and that opens the door to knew friends.

"Whether we go to Jacksonville, or got to Nacogdoches, or Lufkin, or Jasper, or Cleveland, or anywhere around you're going to meet other pilots, you're going to meet other people that's got similar airplane interest," said Don Lymberry, pilot.

And these aviation groups are not just for pilots, some never has flown a plane.

"They have different interests, some love to work on airplanes (or) build airplanes," said Ernest Patrick, pilot.

So when there is tragedy, it ripples through the brotherhood.

"we fly our families, we fly friends, I fly kids all the time and when something like that happens it hurts," said Lymberry. "It hurts all of us as a community."

Even if they don't know the victim.


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