We’re learning more about a helicopter crash in Rowlett on Friday that killed a student pilot and the instructor.
The family of 42-year-old Ty Wallis confirmed Sunday he was one of two people lost in a helicopter crash in Rowlett.
Wallis was flying as a student pilot in a Robinson R-44 model helicopter when eyewitnesses saw the aircraft falling in several pieces Friday afternoon.
Investigators from the NTSB also confirmed the certified flying instructor was a female but did not release her name.
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On Sunday, Chad Chance and Clayton Boyd took time to remember their friend who had wide-ranging interests and a passion for people.
“He was like Doogie Howser. He knew everything about everything,” Boyd said. “Ty’s the best at everything, that’s how I could sum it up.”
Wallis worked as an equine veterinarian in Pilot Point, specializing in orthopedic surgery for equine athletes, according to his company’s website.
On Sunday, the crash site was cleared of any remaining debris but it will likely be months before an exact cause is known.
Dallas-based aviation attorney Jon Kettles told NBC 5 the ability of investigators to preserve the tail boom - which separated before the crash - could be key in a final report.
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“That will be very valuable to determine what caused that separation,” Kettles said.
Chance and Boyd said their focus is on supporting Wallis’ family, which includes his wife Kristen and their young daughter, and remembering their friend.
Specifically, Chance said his wife wanted the public to know that while she grieves an immeasurable loss she is comforted by her deep faith in confronting the loss of her life’s partner.
“Ty died doing something he truly loved and that was aviation," Chance said. ”She (Kristen) believes that Ty’s death was his time and God’s time. And his day was Friday."