An 18-year-old pilot from Mississippi died on Saturday evening from injuries sustained in a plane crash on the University of Mississippi golf course earlier that day.
The Starkville teen and pageant queen, Elizabeth “Lake” Little, was transported to a Memphis-area trauma center after the single-engine plane crashed near the course’s 17th hole. According to University of Mississippi spokesman Rod Guajardo, Little was the only person aboard the plane when she was “performing ‘touch and go’ takeoffs and landings.”
Little had her private pilot’s license and aspired to fly for FedEx. She was selected to compete in this month’s Mississippi Miss Hospitality pageant, and according to her Miss Hospitality profile, was set to attend the University of Southern Mississippi in the fall, where she planned to study speech pathology.
Representatives from the pageant didn’t immediately respond to Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment. However, director Angella Baker told The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal that “she was full of life and lived it to the fullest.”
Little is the daughter of Starkville, Miss. Alderman David Little and Pattie Little. Starkville Mayor Lynn Spruill shared her condolences on Twitter, where she said that “flying was [Little’s] love and her passion.”
The City of Starkville is saddened by the loss of Lake Little. She was a star for us and had such a great plan for her life commitment to others. Flying was her love and her passion. Our thoughts and prayers to her family for comfort.
— Lynn Spruill (@lynn_spruill) July 7, 2019
In an interview with Yahoo Lifestyle Spruill says “the city is still coming to grips with the loss. We are awaiting the determination of the services for her as we work to support the family in this time of grief and loss.”
Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant also shared his support for the grieving family via social media.
Such sad news about Lake Little. A beautiful light has passed from this world far too soon. Deborah and I pray the dear Lord would assuage the pain and grief of her parents and family. https://t.co/iP2xJkSdns
— Phil Bryant (@PhilBryantMS) July 7, 2019
Guajardo tells Yahoo Lifestyle that the National Transportation Safety Board is carrying out an investigation into the crash and will be releasing their findings on Monday.
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