Hot Air Balloon Accident Victims Remembered at UR Graduation - 8NEWS - WRIC | News Where You Live

Hot Air Balloon Accident Victims Remembered at UR Graduation

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Two University of Richmond staff members who were killed in a hot air balloon accident in Doswell on Friday were remembered at the school’s commencement exercises on Sunday. Two University of Richmond staff members who were killed in a hot air balloon accident in Doswell on Friday were remembered at the school’s commencement exercises on Sunday.
The two women were pictured on the hot air balloon on Friday evening, just moments before the fiery crash. Their University of Richmond family vows to honor and always remember their commitment to the school. The two women were pictured on the hot air balloon on Friday evening, just moments before the fiery crash. Their University of Richmond family vows to honor and always remember their commitment to the school.
RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) - Two University of Richmond staff members who were killed in a hot air balloon accident in Doswell on Friday were remembered at the school’s commencement exercises on Sunday.

On Mother’s Day, the University of Richmond welcomed the families and friends of undergraduates; an excited and proud class of 2014 filled the Robins Center, ready for the next step in their lives. But the ceremony began on a somber note, as University Chaplain Craig Kocher took a moment to honor the two women’s basketball team staff members who passed away tragically at the start of the Mid-Atlantic Balloon Festival.

“I want to begin this invocation with a moment of silence, remembering the family and friends of Ginny Doyle and Natalie Lewis and all who share our sorrow,” he said.

Doyle, 44, was the associate head women’s basketball coach. In 1992, she graduated from UR, where she had a standout basketball career. She served on the staff for 16 years, including 9 winning seasons.

Lewis, 24, had just completed her second year as director of basketball operations for the women’s team. The Buffalo, N.Y. native was a four-year letter winner and two-time captain of the Spiders swim team.

The two women were pictured on the hot air balloon on Friday evening, just moments before the fiery crash. Their University of Richmond family vows to honor and always remember their commitment to the school.

“As alumnae, classmates and colleagues—and as invaluable and devoted mentors for our student-athletes—Ginny and Natalie have been beloved members of our community,” President Edward L. Ayers said in a statement on Saturday. “Their leadership and friendship will endure in the lives of so many.”

Director of Athletics Keith Gill said, “Words cannot begin to express our sorrow. We are all stunned by the tragic news. Our thoughts and prayers go out to their loved ones.”



Copyright 2014 by Young Broadcasting of Richmond

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