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Exec, daughter on college trip killed in plane crash

Gretchen Ehlke and Mark Pratt
Associated Press

Milwaukee — The victims of a fiery plane crash in Milwaukee were identified Thursday as a top executive at a Boston capital investment firm and his teenage daughter who were traveling to the Midwest for a college visit.

Joseph Trustey, a former Army officer, and his 18-year-old daughter, Anna, died when their small single-engine plane crashed and erupted in flames Wednesday evening at Timmerman Airport, according to Summit Partners, where Trustey was an executive.

Witnesses reported seeing the crash but being unable to help because of flames and smoke. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating, but there was no immediate word on the cause of the crash.

“He was a wonderful husband and father who also cared deeply for those with whom he worked, both inside and outside the firm,” Summit chief investment officer Martin Mannion said. “We cannot express how much we will miss his presence in our lives.”

Trustey, of Wenham, Massachusetts, served as a captain in the Army, had a chemical engineering degree from the University of Notre Dame and an MBA from Harvard University, according to his online company profile. He was still involved with Notre Dame, serving on a university advisory council.

His daughter was preparing for her senior year in high school at the Brooks School in North Andover, according to the private school’s spokesman, Dan Callahan. He said her father was on the school’s board of trustees.

“People here are obviously pretty shaken up,” Callahan said Thursday.

Residents living near the airport reported the crash around 6 p.m. Wednesday.

Quentin Smith told Milwaukee television station WISN that his first instinct was to try to help when he got through the airport fence but was driven back by the fire. Another witness, Ken Gipp, said the plane was flying extremely low when its right wing hit the ground.

“All you saw was big flames and black smoke everywhere,” witness Melissa Kaylor told the station.

Summit Partners said Joe Trustey joined the firm in 1992, and most recently served as managing director and chief operating officer. He also served on the boards of several nonprofits, and previously worked as a consultant with Bain & Co.

“He touched everybody he met with his intellect, his sterling character and his engaging sense of humor,” Mannion said.

The head of his daughter’s high school, John Packard, said she would be missed.

“Anna was beloved by all who were fortunate enough to know her. She was good to the core,” he said.