The second of two men killed when a plane crashed near Howell will be laid to rest this week.
A memorial service for 68-year-old James Tafralian is set for 11am Thursday at St. Johns Armenian Church in Southfield. Trafalian, along with 64-year-old Philip Colmer, were killed when the Aero Commander 200D they were in crashed after trying to take off from the Spencer J. Hardy Airport in Howell Township.
The National Transportation Safety Board is conducting the investigation into the cause of the crash, which could take a year or more to complete. However, eyewitnesses reported that the plane appeared to lose power, bank hard to the left, and then crash nose-first into a field at the end of the runway.
Tafralian was a pilot, aircraft mechanic and parachute rigger who owned County Aviation Services, based at the Livingston County Airport. He is survived by his son, Michigan State Trooper Joseph Trafalian.
In lieu of flowers, donations are requested to either to the International Skydiving Museum & Hall of Fame or the Fallen Trooper Memorial Fund, which is dedicated to the upkeep of the memorial at the MSP Training Academy. You’ll find details through the link below. Comer, a former Navy aviator and 767 pilot with Delta Airlines, was laid to rest Sunday in Chelsea. (JK)