Wife Remembers Pilot After Deadly Crash

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FLORENCE, Ore. — As a family loses a husband, dad and grandfather, his friends and family reflect on the legacy he leaves behind.

69 year-old Richard Munger died in a plane crash off the coast of Florence Sunday.

Crews are still searching for his 15 year-old grandson Benjamin Dressler.

Munger’s wife Jill Hardin describes him as a caring and dedicated pilot who had a gentle spirit.

She says he passed away doing what he loved, flying high in the sky, living an adventurous life of kindness.

“I want Rick to be remembered for his very gentle spirit, his love of peace and peacefulness,” said Hardin.

“Rick is very very quiet spoken you know. I have never experienced him getting mad or or getting upset or anything like that,” said friend, Steven Saubert.

While the family is coming to terms with the death of Munger — the search is still on for Dressler.

But Hardin says they’ve already spiritually come to terms with the idea Dressler won’t come home.

“You know most of us understand that Benjamin is no longer in his body anyway, if indeed he didn’t escape the situation which would be rather magical if he had,” said Hardin.

Hardin says the two shared a special bond, and feels the presence of them even after this tragic accident.

“I think they were very connected on a soul level. They certainly had the same smile the same wonderful smile. Rick was truly very proud of Benjamin,” said Hardin.

The family is holding a vigil Friday night for the people who knew Munger.

Lane County Search and Rescue is continuing its search for Dressler.

Deputies say their search depends a lot on tide schedules.

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