Arizona father remembers daughter on anniversary of TWA Flight 800

PHOENIX - July 17 is normally a difficult day for Ron Dwyer. It's the day his 11-year-old daughter, Larklyn, died while aboard TWA Flight 800. It's been 18 years since the 1996 crash.

"July 17th starts out as a rough day for me, and then when I woke up and walked out and grabbed my morning coffee and flicked on the news, to hear what happened with the Malaysian Flight 17 was very difficult. Brought back a lot of hard feelings," he said.

FULL COVERAGE: Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 crashes in Ukraine

Thursday morning much of the world learned that a Malaysian Airlines passenger jet with 298 people on board had crashed in Ukraine. United States officials believe the airline was shot out of the sky with a ground-to-air missile.

"I know what they're going through and it's not a good thing," Ron said of the families of the victims.

Political and military officials in Ukraine, including members of the pro-Russian army, were going through what was believed to be wreckage from the plane Thursday. Passports, travel guides, body parts and passenger personal belongings were reportedly scattered over a 10-mile area.

Despite all the bad news to add to an already emotionally tough day, Ron received some good news. He became a grandfather.

"So now we have something positive on July 17th to work with which is, for me, a real change," Ron said.

Of all the days, Ron's step-daughter gave birth to Harper Larkyn Louise.

"Maybe things come back. You just don't know," Ron said.

Ron hasn't spoken publicly about his daughter and the crash since it happened 18 years ago.  He said it was the birth of his granddaughter that inspired him to share his story.

 

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