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Family, Lutz church mourn pilot killed in Continental plane crash

Marvin Renslow, his wife Sandy and their children Tyler and Kaylee are shown in an undated family photo. Marvin Renslow died Thursday in the Continental plane crash near Buffalo, N.Y.

Renslow family photo

Marvin Renslow, his wife Sandy and their children Tyler and Kaylee are shown in an undated family photo. Marvin Renslow died Thursday in the Continental plane crash near Buffalo, N.Y.

LUTZ — Marvin Renslow loved two things: his family and his church.

"I'm telling you," said his brother-in-law Tracy Martin, "nothing was third."

Martin and other relatives continued mourning Saturday for Renslow, a 47-year-old airline pilot from Lutz. He was killed Thursday night when his twin turboprop plane, Continental Express Flight 3407, fell from the sky and crashed into a house near Buffalo, N.Y., killing all 49 people on board and one person on the ground.

"It's overwhelming," Martin said Saturday evening of the attention that has descended on the family at their cul-de-sac in Lutz since the accident.

Renslow's wife, Sandy, and their two children aren't ready to talk about the husband and father they lost. It's all still so raw. They meant the world to him — and he to them.

The family tried to write Renslow's obituary Saturday night but kept having to stop.

Martin, of Texas, is married to Sandy Renslow's sister and knew Marvin Renslow for 10 years. He said the family is grateful for the support it's received from friends, relatives and church family at the First Baptist Church of Lutz. Martin said Renslow devoted much of his time there and also played drums at various church functions.

"He was a person who would do anything for anybody," Martin said. "I know people always say that about someone in times like this, but it's true."

Renslow's memorial service will be at the church, 18116 U.S. 41 N, at 6 p.m. Friday. The church answering machine asks callers to remember the Renslow family in their prayers.

The family has created a fund for the children's education and asks that donations be made there in lieu of flowers. The fund is at Suncoast Schools Federal Credit Union, 1837 Collier Parkway, Lutz, 33549. The account number is 4433106, in care of the "Renslow Family."

Friday night, a day after his father's death, Renslow's son, Tyler, a high school senior, found out that he was accepted by the college of his choice.

But the 17-year-old doesn't think he should go, Martin said. It's too expensive. And he should stay here, to take care of his mom and sister. His family, though, wants him to go.

"He's brilliant," Martin said.

Erin Sullivan can be reached at esullivan@sptimes.com.

Family, Lutz church mourn pilot killed in Continental plane crash 02/14/09 [Last modified: Saturday, February 14, 2009 10:06pm]
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