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December 10, 2011 10:02 PM

Pilot Gives Sympathy To Brian Blake's Family

Tea, SD


Pete Sanchez has been flying airplanes for more than a decade, and for the past four years he's gotten to know fellow pilot, Brian Blake.

Blake was one of the four killed in Friday's plane crash.

"Brian's the guy that's in there taking care of the office, so we just became friends from me keeping my airplane out here," Sanchez said.

Sanchez says that it's always sad when a plane crash like Friday's happens, because they sometimes give airplanes and pilots a bad reputation.

"Hour for hour flying, even a small private airplane like Brian was flying, it's a better safety record then you know driving in a car as far as getting into an accident," Sanchez said.

And one of the similarities that Sanchez and Blake shared, was of course, their love for aviation.

"I can remember sitting in there at the FBO and grabbing a candy bar for one of the kids and just sitting down and talking airplanes," Sanchez said.

Sanchez says Blake's love for the sky was evident every time he took off.

"You have to take some risks in life and I think, being able to go fly was Brian's passion, it's my passion," Sanchez said.

Sanchez says he lost a close friend Friday, and his thoughts and prayers are with Blake's family as well as the three other families.

"I think it's a terrible sad, terribly sad thing to have happen especially at this time of the year and I just hope that they can take some peace and comfort," Sanchez said.

Funeral services for Brian will be held at 10 a.m. on Wednesday at Southern Hills United Methodist Church in Sioux Falls. Visitation with the family present will be from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at Miller Funeral Home on Main Avenue, Sioux Falls.
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