Evan Whitt was remembered Wednesday night as a young man who was a leader who possessed a passion for flight.
"Probably one of the sharpest kids in the piloting class," Mark Curtner of Sidney, aviation instructor with the Ohio Hi-Point Career Center in Bellefontaine, said of Evan. "He was always sharper than most."
Curtner was in the crowd at Graham High School in St. Paris for the vigil to offer prayers for Evan, a sophomore who lost his life in a single-vehicle crash on U.S. 36 -- west of the high school -- the afternoon of Sept. 20.
Evan wanted to be a bush pilot and he was passionate about it, Curtner said. Bush flying involves operating in rough terrain where there are oten no landing strips or runways.
"It's like flying a Jeep for the sky," the instructor said. Many bush planes are outfitted with abnormally large tires, floats of skis.
As a reminder of the passion, Curtner said Evan's fellow aviation students designed and built a memorial piece to their lost piloting brother by restoring and old propeller blade of an Alaskan bush plane with dark green trim, and building a flower box to simulate a the airplane of Evan's dreams.
"I think his parents will like it," Curtner told News Center 7’s Sean Cudahy on Wednesday night.
Evan earned his driver's license just two weeks ago, Curtner said, and was on his way to advancing to pilot classes offered at the airport.
Curtner said the family has had a particularly tough time because Evan's cousin, 15-year-old Lucas Whitt, was killed July 13 when he was struck by a car. The Graham High School sophomore was on a bicycle when a car struck him from behind on state Route 55.