Mother mourns 19-year-old-son killed in small plane crash

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Jeremy Linnertz was killed in a plane crash during the weekend. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Jeremy Linnertz was killed in a plane crash during the weekend. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Jeremiah Linnertz (left) was flying with Spencer Kihlstrom (right) when the plane went down. (Source: Facebook) Jeremiah Linnertz (left) was flying with Spencer Kihlstrom (right) when the plane went down. (Source: Facebook)
Linnertz was also a father of a 4-month-old son, who passionately cared for his girlfriend’s 1-year-old daughter. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Linnertz was also a father of a 4-month-old son, who passionately cared for his girlfriend’s 1-year-old daughter. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

Family members are making final funeral arrangements for two 19-year-old friends who were killed in a small plane crash near Prescott.

Spencer Kihlstrom and Jeremiah “Jeremy” Linnertz, both from Chino Valley, were in a single-engine Cessna that took off Friday and disappeared.

Searchers found the wreckage Saturday just before 1 p.m. several miles east of Paulden.

[READ MORE: Small plane crash kills 2 men in Yavapai County]

Wendy Windsor, Linnertz’s mother, said the two 19-year-olds were friends since high school. They were both in ROTC at Chino Valley High School.

She said Kihlstrom, who had a pilot’s license, would frequently take her son flying.

“He would show me videos and pictures and stuff from the airplane and everything that they did. Always made me a little nervous and everything because you know, you just kind of want to keep your kid's feet on the ground, but he loved it,” she said.

“It was kind of a stress relief just to be able to go up and fly,” Windsor added.

Linnertz was a quiet 19-year-old who loved learning about military history, she said. He was also a father of a 4-month-old son, who passionately cared for his girlfriend’s 1-year-old daughter.

“He was always there for them,” Windsor said. "He would bring diapers over, formula, whatever -- whatever they needed."

"I just miss him terribly," she added.

Federal investigators say it may take a year or more to complete their inquiry.

The family says services for Linnertz have been tentatively set for Saturday at 11 a.m. The family has established a GoFundMe page for his children.

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Derek StaahlDerek Staahl is an Emmy Award-winning reporter and fill-in anchor who loves covering stories that matter most to Arizona families.

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Derek Staahl

This once-uncompromising "California guy" got his first taste of Arizona in 2015 while covering spring training baseball for his former station. The trip spanned just three days, but Derek quickly decided Phoenix should be his next address. He joined CBS 5 and 3TV four months later, in August 2015. Before packing his bags for the Valley of the Sun, Derek spent nearly four years at XETV in San Diego, where he was promoted to Weekend Anchor and Investigative Reporter. Derek chaired the Saturday and Sunday 10 p.m. newscasts, which regularly earned the station's highest ratings for a news program each week. Derek’s investigative reporting efforts into the Mayor Bob Filner scandal in 2013 sparked a "governance crisis" for the city of San Diego and was profiled by the region’s top newspaper. Derek broke into the news business at WKOW-TV in Madison, WI. He wrote, shot, edited, and presented stories during the week, and produced newscasts on the weekends. By the end of his stint, he was promoted to part-time anchor on WKOW’s sister station, WMSN. Derek was born in Los Angeles and was named the “Undergraduate Broadcast Journalism Student of the Year” in his graduating class at USC. He also played quads in the school’s famous drumline. When not reporting the news, Derek enjoys playing drumset, sand volleyball, and baseball.

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