Wife of pilot who died in crash remembers him as funny, caring

Keith McElvain died when his small plane went down in Cherokee County

Wife of pilot who died in crash remembers him as funny, caring
Keith McElvain stands with his plane. (Source: Keith McElvain's Facebook)

CHEROKEE COUNTY, TEXAS (KLTV) - Galina McElvain is spending a lot of time looking through old photos, remembering the wonderful times she shared with her husband Keith.

“He was very funny, he would joke a lot, even with my English,” said McElvain. “I remember one time, I would confuse fog and frog and one time I looked through the blinds and I said ‘it’s too froggy, you cannot fly’ and from that point on it was our word, froggy not foggy.”

She’s now learned of so many other wonderful memories of Keith shared by his family and friends.

“I put an ad on his Facebook, I didn’t know how to reach out to people to tell them he’s gone,” said McElvain. “I just put an ad by his name that he’s gone and it was such an out-pour of good memories.”

Keith died when his small plane crashed on Monday in Cherokee County. He was out taking aerial photos; something Galina said he loved to do.

“He wanted me to go with him that day,” said McElvain.

She said what seemed like a normal Monday, she now can’t forget any details from.

“Then one of them said there is no good way of saying it, could you please sit down,” said McElvain. “I knew something bad is coming but it still would not click and they said ‘your husband got killed in an airplane crash’.”

Thanks to investigators giving her Keith’s watch, she can’t forget the time it happened.

“They say time of death, such and such, time of impact and now I have it here,” said McElvain, looking at the watch her husband was wearing when his plane crashed. The hands stuck on 12:17. “I remember every minute of what I was doing at this particular time, when he was going down.”

McElvain said she didn’t tell her husband she loved him enough and she regrets that. She’s hoping others will take this as an opportunity to always tell their loved ones how much they mean to them.

“I believe in fate and I believe everything happens for a reason,” said McElvain. “Maybe a time will come when I finally understand why it happened.”

The full details of Keith’s memorial service aren’t still pending, but it will take place on February 16. Galina aks in lieu of flowers, she’d appreciate donations to Our Family Vet in Jacksonville, in Keith’s name, for his animals.

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