SARASOTA COUNTY, Fla. -- We're learning more about the Georgia man that was killed Sunday afternoon when he was struck by a plane making an emergency landing.
36-year-old Ommy Irizarry and his young daughter, 9-year-old Oceana were walking along Caspersen Beach around 3pm when the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office says the pilot a 1972 Piper Cherokee, 57-year-old Karl Kokomoor of Englewood, reported that his single engine plane couldn't make it back to the airport and he was going to try and land on the nearby beach.
Irizarry was killed and his 9-year-old daughter was critically injured.
According to the U.S. Army, Irizarry, a Puerto Rico native, was on active duty as a Sergeant First Class in the Mechanical Maintenance Field, and had been in the service since 2002.
He had been deployed to Iraq twice: from March 2003 to March 2004, and from October 2005 to September 2006.
Ommy had posted on his Facebook page earlier Sunday that he was celebrating his 9th anniversary with his wife while vacationing on the Suncoast. "Thank you for being with me through thick and thin. I love you with all my heart, mi Roma," he wrote.
There’s since been an outpouring of love and support for the Irizarry family on both Ommy Irizarry and his wife Rebecca's Facebook pages. Andre McCaskill writes: “I keep telling myself I'm dreaming. I'm sorry I just don't want to believe this happened. Ommy was one of the greatest friends and battles a person could ask for."
Irizarry leaves behind a wife and three children, who are no stranger to loss. Just last month, Irizarry's wife lost her father.
The family lives in Fort Stewart, Georgia.