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RCAF grieves 'tireless and energetic' officer as Kamloops memorial to Capt. Jenn Casey grows

Last Updated May 19, 2020 at 1:19 am PDT

Summary

A memorial at the Kamloops airport is growing, as locals pay their respects to the fallen Snowbirds Captain

A petition asking for Airpot Road to be renamed Capt. J. Casey Memorial Way is steadily gathering signatures

Commanding officers of the Royal Canadian Air Force are grieving the 'tireless and energetic' Public Affairs Officer

KAMLOOPS (NEWS 1130) — A chainlink fence near the Kamloops Airport is being covered with paper hearts, Canadian flags, and flowers as a memorial to Snowbirds Capt. Jenn Casey who died in a plane crash Sunday.

The grounded CT-114 Tutor jets can be seen on the tarmac beyond.

A petition to rename Kamloops’ Airport Road in her honour is steadily gathering signatures.

At the same time, more than 1,000 kilometres away, commanding officers of the Royal Canadian Air Force, were remembering Casey as a “tireless and energetic officer.”

“The team is devastated by the loss of Jen,” Lt.-Col. Mike French said.

“She absolutely loved this job.”

French said a nomination for a commendation recognizing her work on Operation Inspiration was being drafted at the time of her death, “In recognition of the stellar effort.”

The plane Casey was in went down Sunday, shortly after taking off. The snowbirds were doing a scheduled fly-over in Kamloops as part of Operation Inspiration–a nation-wide tour meant to boost the spirits of Canadians and honour frontline workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

French said Casey’s savvy with social media and dedication to her role as Public Affairs Officer were the main reason the operation was so well-received.

“Her loss is a serious blow not only to our team but to the RCAF and the Canadian Armed Forces as a whole,” he continued, adding the force has extended condolences to her family.

“No words can comfort the pain they are feeling right now, and I’ve passed on that they are not grieving alone.”

B.C.’s top doctor took time at the beginning of her daily briefing on COVID-19 in the province to offer her condolences.

“We extend our heartfelt sympathies to the family, and friends, and coworkers of Capt. Jennifer Casey and of course the Candian Snowbirds. We know that they bring Canadians together, and this is a loss that will be felt by all of us,” said Dr. Bonnie Henry.

“We stand beside you with our hands on our hearts in sorrow, and in strength. I think perhaps we might have some solace in knowing that Capt. Casey maybe truly has slipped the surly bonds of earth, and is dancing the skies.”