ATHENS (WATE) – National Transportation Safety Board and FAA investigators are still looking into what caused a plane crash in Massachusetts that killed an East Tennessee family.

Dr. Rick Kalister of Farragut Tennessee, along with his wife Betty and their daughter Nicole were killed when the plane they were in crashed into the home, just minutes over the Rhode Island border. According to a family friend, the couple was taking Nicole to orientation at Northeastern University, where she was recently accepted.Related:

Dr. Kalister was a doctor in Athens, Tennessee, and he joined the McMinn County Sheriff’s Office as a SWAT medic about five years ago. Deputies there describe him as an excellent doctor, loving husband, and proud father.

“We never worried about anything with him on the team,” said Deputy Adam Cook. Cook said called Dr. Kalister “Doc” and the news of his death came as a shock.

“I had just seen him and talked to him last Thursday, and it’s just shock when you come in and find that one of your friends and coworkers and fellow brothers has passed away,” said Detective Jared Price.

Deputies say Dr. Kalister was well-known and highly respected within McMinn County. “Just an all-around great guy. He’d come in to work here with a smile on his face and like I said just his attitude and his persona was just great,” said Sargent Blake Witt.

An experienced pilot, he often flew other SWAT members across the country for training, always going to extra mile to help out. Deputies say it is his contagious smile and friendly personality that will be remembered most. “It’s just hard to imagine somebody like that gone. The world lost a good man,” said Cook.

Deputies say they plan to retire Dr. Kalister’s unit number and put a plaque on the wall in his memory. Dr. Kalister and his wife Betty had another daughter, Jackie, who was not with them during the time of the crash.

In lieu of flowers please make donations to the Nicole Kalister Scholarship Fund,