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Metro Detroit flight instructor killed in small plane crash "set a great example for everybody"

Family, friends mourn Metro Detroit flight instructor killed in small plane crash
Family, friends mourn Metro Detroit flight instructor killed in small plane crash 02:08

(CBS DETROIT) - Kevin Kreger, 46, of Dearborn, was killed on Monday when a small plane he was flying crashed in Washtenaw County. 

At the time of the impact, the flight instructor was giving a lesson to a 22-year-old student who was airlifted to Michigan Medicine in critical condition. 

Kreger is survived by his wife, Melissa, and daughters Tatiana and Lakelynn. 

Dearborn resident Alex Grignon has known Kreger for years. He said Kreger was his high school football coach, chiropractor and friend. 

Grignon said he was shocked by the news that he was gone. 

"Shock was the initial thing, but then, as a father, myself, the next thing I thought about was his daughters, and I found out after that it was one of his daughter's birthdays yesterday, which compounded the problem and how sad it was and tragic," he said. "And that's where my mind stayed at was: What was the last conversation like? The fact that they'll never get to see him again is heartbreaking." 

The crash happened just after 1 p.m. on Monday. Eyewitnesses said the plane suddenly nosedived into a field in the village of Clinton. 

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash, which could take between 12 to 24 months.  

According to a news release, a preliminary report will be issued in 30 days. 

As for Kreger, Grignon said the community of Dearborn is mourning a valued and cherished member.  

"He was definitely one of the good ones in Dearborn," he said. "You wouldn't find anybody that has anything negative to say about him. He was positive, he was energetic, he was enthusiastic, he was passionate, and he was sincere. A lot of people will ask you how you're doing or say 'Hello,' or kind of go through the motions. He really cared." 

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