7 Dead in Private Plane Crash after NCAA Basketball Tournament

Date: April 7, 2015

Location: Bloomington, Illinois

Names: Torrey Ward, Aaron Leetch, Scott Bittner, Jason Jones

7 Dead in Private Plane Crash after NCAA Basketball Tournament

Early Tuesday morning a small private plane crashed in central Illinois killing all seven people on board.

Two of the victims were identified as Illinois State University head basketball coach, Torrey Ward and athletic department’s deputy director for external relations, Aaron Leetch.

The Cessna 414 twin-engine aircraft took off from Indianapolis and crash near the Central Illinois Regional Airport in Bloomington around midnight.

The cause of the crash is under investigation. Photos show the area had dense fog. Radar contact was lost shortly before the crash and a search was launched when the pilot didn’t close out his flight plan.

Two other victims identified was Scott Bittner, 42, and Jason Jones, a former basketball and baseball player for Illinois Wesleyan University and worked at Wells Fargo Advisors.

We extend our condolences to the family and friends of all seven victims in the crash.

Oregon wrongful death claims are allowed under ORS 30.010-30.100, but the law is much more complicated than a normal accident case. First of all, the statute of limitations (SOL)(time limit on filing a claim) is different. For most car accidents, the SOL is two years, but for wrongful death, the SOL is “three years after the injury causing the death . . . is discovered or reasonably should have been discovered. . . .”

Additionally, there are limits on who can bring a wrongful death claim. The most common claimants are:

  • Spouses
  • Children (including stepchildren)
  • Parents (including stepparents)

Less common claimants include:

  • Grandchildren
  • Siblings
  • Grandparents

In a wrongful death case, you can ask for compensation for several types of damages such as:

  • Charges for medical services;
  • Charges for burial and memorial services;
  • Compensation that the decedent would have been entitled to for disability, pain and suffering, and loss of income during the period between injury and death;
  • Compensation for “pecuniary loss” to the decedent’s estate;
  • Compensation for the loss of the decedent’s “society, companionship and services” to the decedent’s spouse, children, stepchildren, stepparents, and parents;

Punitive damages are allowed as well, but are rare in Oregon since the State takes 70% of punitive damages awarded. If you have lost a loved one, call a Portland wrongful death attorney for help in securing the compensation you deserve.


About Sean DuBois

Sean is a personal injury attorney in Portland, OR. He has been recognized by Super Lawyers Magazine as Oregon Rising Stars for the past four years because of his dedication to justice and fair compensation for his clients. If you need to speak with a lawyer about your injury case, Sean can be reached at 503-222-4411.

Posted on April 10, 2015, in Wrongful Death and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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