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Jane Unhjem, plane crash victim, to have memorial service at school

Jane Unhjem, a Goshen assistant school district superintendent

Jane Unhjem, a Goshen assistant school district superintendent for curriculum and instruction, was killed in a plane crash on Long Island on Aug. 19, 2012. (September 2011) Newsday's obituary for Jane Unhjem
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A memorial service for plane-crash victim Jane Marie Unhjem, an assistant school superintendent in Goshen, will be held in the district's high school auditorium on Oct. 21, a funeral home spokeswoman said Monday.

Unhjem, 60, died Aug. 19 in a fiery crash on Long Island. The crash also killed the plane's owner, David McElroy, 53, of Orient. Unhjem's husband, Erik Unhjem, 61, spent several weeks at Stony Brook University Hospital recovering from injuries sustained in the crash.

The spokeswoman for Donovan Funeral Home in Goshen said the memorial service would be held at 2 p.m., but had no further details. She said funeral services would be restricted to Jane Unhjem's family, but it remained unclear when they would be held.

A call to Goshen School Superintendent Daniel Connor was not immediately returned.

Witnesses to the accident told the National Transportation Safety Board that the 21-year-old plane, a Daher Socata TB10, moved down the runway at Brookhaven Calabro Airport in Shirley more slowly than normal. They said the plane lifted off near the end of the runway.

The NTSB's preliminary report cited radar records indicating that the plane climbed to 200 feet before plunging into a tree and a construction trash bin and bursting into flames.

The Unhjems flew to Shirley to inspect the plane -- they were thinking about buying it -- and decided to take it for a test flight, officials said.

Erik Unhjem is a product manager for Pearson Education, a software education company, according to his Facebook and LinkedIn accounts.

Jane Unhjem, a Minneapolis native, was the Goshen Central School District's assistant superintendent for curriculum.

On Sept. 21, the district named Mary Ann Wilson, who had worked as the assistant superintendent for instruction at Orange-Ulster BOCES, as the interim assistant superintendent for curriculum.

Calls to Erik Unhjem's house went unanswered.

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