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Goshen gives to Unhjem family after plane crash on LI
Two groups are collecting donations to help Gayle and Matthew Unhjem, whose mother, Jane, died Aug. 19 in a fiery plane crash on Long Island. Their father, Erik, was seriously injured and faces "weeks if not months" in the hospital, the man's brother said last week.
Jane Unhjem was a beloved assistant superitendent at Goshen Central School District and was an active member of the community.
The Orange County couple had flown to Shirley to inspect a plane owned by David J. McElroy, 53, for possible purchase. They were on a test flight piloted by McElroy when the crash occurred, investigators said.
After takeoff, the plane pulled up to avoid hitting a house before slamming into a large oak tree and crashing onto Helene Avenue upside down, witnesses said. McElroy died at the scene.
In respose to requests from the community about how to help the family, two Goshen School District employees are collecting cash donations for the Unhjem children at the district's Main Street Building, 227 Main St., in Goshen, according to the district website.
A family friend has also set up a page on FundRzr.com to collect donations, where supporters already have donated $1,740 toward the $2,000 goal.
Funeral arrangements for Jane Unhjem are still pending, according to Donovan Funeral Home in Goshen.