Newberg youth dies in plane crash
A Newberg High School student is among the eight people killed last week in a midair collision between two planes over a resort area in Idaho.
Hayden Fredrickson, 16, a sophomore student and athlete at the school, is confirmed to be among the fatalities when a Cessna 206G collided into a de Haviland DHC-2 float plane at about 2:20 p.m. July 5 over Lake Coeur d'Alene in northern Idaho. He was flying with his father, PGA professional Sean Fredrickson, and step-siblings Sofie, 15, and Quinn Fredrickson, 11, who lived in Tualatin.
An official from the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office, Lt. Ryan Riggins, said there were no survivors and that two unidentified people were immediately pronounced dead at the scene. A third victim was recovered at a depth of more than 127 feet via remote-operated vehicle and a sonar team, Riggins said. Both planes have been located via sonar and the remaining victims were recovered by Thursday, July 9.
The cause of the collision at the popular resort town 33 miles northeast of Spokane is under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration.
Hayden Fredrickson was an athlete in middle school, participating in track, soccer and basketball, before ascending to NHS, where he played varsity soccer for the Tigers. He earned an honorable mention nod as a sophomore for the fall 2019 season from the Pacific Conference.
According to news accounts, the Fredricksons were flying in the de Haviland float plane with pilot Niel Lunt, 58, from Brooks Seaplane of Coeur d'Alene, and another unidentified adult. The other victims were flying in the Cessna out of Lewiston, Idaho; Riggins said there were at least two people in that plane when it crashed.
Sean Fredrickson, 48, was head PGA golf professional at Oswego Lake Country Club, where he was named PGA Professional of the Year in 2019 for the Pacific Northwest Section. He previously worked for 14 years at Tualatin Country Club. He also was president of the Pacific Northwest Section of the PGA.
"Many of your know that I lost my husband and beautiful children in a plane wreck over Lake Coeur d'Alene …," April Upchurch, Sean Fredrickson's wife, told a Spokane TV station. "I am reeling from the loss, but take solace in the fact that they were on an adventure and so excited for their first seaplane ride."
A GoFundMe account has been set up for Alix Sprecher Fredrickson, Hayden Fredrickson's mother and an NHS alum, to defray the costs of memorial services and for counseling and meals for her. The fund's original goal was $5,000, but had raised more than $23,200 as of Thursday afternoon. Visit https://bit.ly/2DlqJED to give.
"You can't even put into words the pain that I'm feeling right now," Sprecher Fredrickson told People magazine last week. "The loss, the sense of emptiness, the void that I know will never be filled. I keep waiting for him to come home."
The Newberg School District's crisis response team — which includes counselors, bilingual specialists and school psychologists — held a gathering on July 8 in the auxiliary gym at NHS.
"Our thoughts are with each of you during this difficult time," a statement sent to parents said. "Please observe your child closely over the next several days and weeks to watch for signs of distresss, which may indicate a need for additional support and guidance."
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