Illinois State Associate Coach Torrey Ward Killed Amongst 6 Others Flying Home From NCAA Championship Game

Updated: April 7, 2015
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What a terrible tragedy.  Torrey Ward, Associate Coach for the Illinois State Redbirds basketball program was killed just hours after he tweeted this ominous message about the private jet ride he took to Indiana for the Wisconsin/Duke NCAA Championship game.

The Redbirds had one of their best seasons ever, as head coach Dan Muller was recently awarded NCAA Division 1 Coach of the Year by the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association. The team went 22-13 overall, with several benchmark victories including an upset of Wichita State in the MVC Tournament.  The team excelled off the court as well, with a combined 2.99 GPA, which makes the Kentucky’s of the world pail in comparison.

Along with Coach Ward, 6 others died in the crash, including business owner Scott Bittner, bar owner Terry Stralow and Illinois State’s deputy director of athletics, Aaron Leetch.  the Cessna 414 crashed near Bloomington, Illinois shortly after midnight Tuesday as it apparently missed the run way by two miles; targeting Central Illinois Regional Airport.


414 Cessna Wreckage