Friends: Student in crash was upbeat, happy to be flying


HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Friends of a student pilot killed in a Connecticut plane crash say he had an obsessive love of flying since his youth in Jordan and was supposed to take his final pilot’s exam this week.

One friend says the pilot, Feras Freitekh, seemed his usual, happy self in a message he left only hours before he died Tuesday in East Hartford.

Freitekh’s friends say he never had problems with anger or depression. They’re puzzled by U.S. officials’ assertions that he crashed the plane intentionally while arguing with his instructor, who survived. One official has said it appears to have been a suicide attempt.

A friend told The Associated Press that Freitekh planned to move back to Jordan after his final test Friday and looked forward to becoming an airline pilot.

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