Family Says Hawaii Crash Victim Was Adventurer
Casey Williamson's love of adventure led him to winter snowboarding in Vail, Colorado, and summer skydiving in Moab, Utah. A year-and-a-half ago, he found his way to Hawaii, where he could skydive year-round.
On Friday, the 29-year-old was among 11 killed when their skydiving plane crashed and burned at a coastal airfield on the island of Oahu. It was the worst civilian aviation accident in the U.S. since 2011.
Williamson was his mother Carla Ajaga's only child, his cousin Natacha Mendenhall said.
"We're all very upset," said Mendenhall, speaking from her home in Fort Worth, Texas. "She cannot really talk right now. What she wants everyone to know is how full of life her son was, how loving he was."
Williamson, who was from Yukon, Oklahoma, worked as an instructor and as a videographer who filmed customers as they dove. He was trying to earn more jumping hours and learn the trade, Mendenhall said.
Williamson's family has not been officially notified of his death. But they provided Honolulu police with Williamson's name and date of birth, and the police confirmed he was on the flight, Mendenhall said.
No one aboard survived the crash, which left a small pile of smoky wreckage near the chain link fence surrounding Dillingham Airfield about an hour north of Honolulu.
Dillingham Airfield is used mostly for skydiving and glider flights. Hawaii shares the airfield with the Army, which uses it for helicopter night-vision training.