A woman who knew both men involved in the plane crash in East Hartford spoke to Eyewitness News on Wednesday.
The woman, who did not want to be identified, said she is in shock over what happened on Tuesday, and wonders if there was something that could have been done to prevent it.
"My heart sunk. I just had an instant, really bad feeling that it was one of Connecticut Flight Academy's planes and I would most likely know who was on that plane,” the woman said.
It turns out she did. She is an acquaintance of the two men who were on the plane that crashed.
“I was in the middle of eating dinner with my husband and instantly, started bawling, not just because of who was in the plane, but because the fact that one of them that I was starting to grow close with, had perished in the plane crash,” the woman said.
She met the men at the Connecticut Flight Academy.
Arian Prevalla owns the school, and Feras Freitekh was a student from Jordan, here on a visa for flight school.
"Arian was total sweetheart, very hard worker would do anything for anybody,” she said. “Feras was a very shy individual, he was very friendly.”
She said something that happened in August did stand out to her.
"He had to have his picture taken for one of the certifications and he kind of freaked when he found out he had to have his picture taken,” the woman said.
She said it seemed like more than a concern over a bad photo.
"When he found out he had to have his picture taken he turned around and said ‘okay, I'm ready’ but then when they were going to do it, he backed out and said ‘no, no, no, I can’t do this’,” the woman said to Eyewitness News.
She said he eventually got his picture taken because it was required as part of his studies.
She also said the relationship between Prevalla and Freitekh was a typical one, between instructor and student.
"If Arian found that Feras was struggling in certain areas and not up to speed where he should be as a student, he would jump in and talk to him,” the woman said.
She added that Freitekh mostly kept to himself.
“He did have a couple of friends… one of the other students I know they both spoke the same language and there were a lot of times where they would be walking back and forth and they would be conversing in their own language, which obviously most of us can't understand what's going on, but it was always a laughing joking kind of conversation between the two where it didn’t make me feel that I needed to start worrying about one or the other,” she said.
Now, as soon as it came out that the crash may have been intentional, she wonders if she missed any signs of trouble.
"I replayed scenarios in my head and nothing popped out to me, his attitude towards the end never changed, he never exhibited any kind of anger or frustration towards anybody, he was still the quite very friendly guy since I started dealing with him,” she said.
The woman also said she is thinking of the families of both men and feels for what they must be going through.
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