ATHENS, Tenn. (WPRI) — Dr. Rick Kalister was last seen dancing in the emergency department, now hospital staff at Starr Regional Medial Center in Athens, Tennessee remember their co-worker.
“I’m not quite sure I can find words cause there were no words, I was devastated last night and almost hoped and prayed that it wasn’t true,” Neal Johns, ER Managing Dir. of Starr Regional Medical Center said.
Kalister was the emergency room director at the Athens, Tennessee hospital.
“He was the most positive person we have. No matter what, as I walk by someone who said they were sorry and gave their condolences to to me today, he said one of the greatest parts of Rick was he was always happy everyday no matter what he was a wonderful, wonderful person,” Johns continued.
Nicole was planning to start her college education this fall but is now being remembered by some of her high school teachers.
“Nicole was a student you could always count on, who was bigger than life and ready to share it with the world.”
Another teacher said, “Nicole was an incredibly bright young woman who was never afraid to be herself.”
Friends of Rick describe him as an experienced pilot, flying since his days serving in the military.
“He’s a great pilot, I’ve flown with him many, many times.”
According to the Chattanooga Times Free Press, Kalister co-owned the plane with a family friend in Cleveland.