Celebration of life held for former WA lawmaker John McKibbin - KPTV - FOX 12

Celebration of life held for former WA lawmaker John McKibbin

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John McKibbin John McKibbin

Hundreds gathered at Columbia Presbyterian Church Saturday to celebrate the life of former Washington lawmaker John McKibbin, whose plane crashed into the Columbia River in March.

The Clatsop County Sheriff’s Office said McKibbin, 69, was flying Irene Mustain, 63, to the coast to spread the ashes of her late husband in the Pacific Ocean.

Friends of McKibbin said he told them the trip would take an hour, but when several hours passed they called for help.

The U.S. Coast Guard and Clatsop County Sheriff's Office conducted multiple searches, but river conditions forced dive teams to wait two days before getting into the water.  

Searchers had marked oil spots and anomalies in the water, and divers located the plane in numerous pieces on the floor of the river on March 25.

During a candlelight vigil, Pastor Fitz Neal described McKibbin as a mentor, servant leader, and a great friend.

McKibbin served two terms in the state legislature, three terms as a Clark County commissioner and was former president of the Greater Vancouver Chamber of Commerce.

He had been serving as the head of Identity Clark County, a nonprofit organization in Vancouver that focuses on the economic health of the region.

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