Life has come full circle in a matter of days for Sheldon Williams as he grieved the loss of his father at a funeral service on the same day he welcomed his newborn son into the world, bearing the same name.
Allen Dale Williams, 65, was killed in a small plane crash last week along with his business associate, Steven Sutton, 50.
The lone survivor of the wreck, Kate Williams, was Allen’s three-year-old granddaughter, who now has a baby brother by her side as the two little miracles that emerged from a terrible accident.
"It’s one of the bright stars in this very dark moment," Sheldon said, flanked by family members before the public funeral service. "We lost one Allen Dale and now have another to carry on his legacy.
"Between Kate and (the baby), it’s just fantastic."
More than 1,000 people packed the Alberta Aviation Museum Saturday to remember Williams, a life-long pilot and founder of A.D. Williams Engineering.
"Allen always made a conscious effort to get off the beaten path so he could experience the people," MP Rahim Jaffer stated in his eulogy.
"I would say he was a great Canadian, and he will be missed."
Rescue crews found the little girl upside down in a child’s car seat, scared, but in good condition after enduring the plane crash and five hours in cold temperatures.
Transport Canada is investigating what led to the crash, but still doesn’t know what caused the accident.
"I had actually taken off from that airport half an hour before my dad in our other airplane and conditions were poor, but they weren’t below visual rules," said Allen’s son, Reagan Williams.
"My dad was an amazing pilot and the fact that he was able to save Kate is the most amazing thing."