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BREAKING NEWS: Orillian killed in Ethiopia Airlines crash

Angela Rehhorn was a 'bright and shining star,' says colleague at Couchiching Conservancy
031110-Angela Rehhorn-ethiopia crash
Angela Rehhorn (Photo courtesy of Canadian Wildlife Federation/Facebook)

An Orillia woman, a ‘bright and shining star,’ was killed in Sunday’s tragic Ethiopia Airlines crash that killed all 157 people on board.

Angela Rehhorn, a 2017 graduate of Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, had returned to her hometown to work with the Couchiching Conservancy as a participant in the Canadian Wildlife Federation’s Canadian Conservation Corps (CCC).

“From the moment she walked into our office, she was just such a bright shining star,” said Dorthea Hangaard, project manager for the Conservancy, who worked closely with Rehhorn.

“She was confident and smart and you could tell she loved what she did,” Hangaard told OrilliaMatters.

The CCC posted a statement about Rehhorn’s death on their website this evening:

It is with deep sadness that we share the news of the sudden and tragic passing of the Canadian Wildlife Federation’s Canadian Conservation Corps participant, Angela Rehhorn.

Angela was chosen to participate in the United Nations Environmental Assembly in Nairobi as part of the United Nations Association of Canada’s, Canada Service Corps Program, and was on her way there when the plane crashed early Sunday.

Angela was part of CCC Group 5, "The Mountain Goats."  

She had recently completed a Bsc at Dalhousie University and was thrilled to be part of the CCC program.  Her experience took her to Alberta where she went backpacking in Kananaskis this past fall and then to Pacific Rim National Park in BC for her field training.  

At the time of her passing, Angela had just completed volunteering her time to do species surveys and was developing a citizen science project on bat conservation. She was especially interested in the marine environment and looked forward to expanding her experience in this area.

Being selected to attend this UN Assembly is a testament to the tremendous contributions and value Angela and her fellow CCC cohorts bring to the future of conservation.

“Angela shared the excitement and optimism of volunteering and working to improve our world. Her life is an inspiration to us all,” said Rick Bates, CEO of the Canadian Wildlife Federation.

Rehhorn had been volunteering to do species surveys and was developing a citizen project on bat conservation.

"Our hearts are broken," said Hangaard. "It's just devastating."

That was a sentiment shared often on social media. On Angela's Facebook page, her friend Brooke Barrett shared:

"I’m so honoured that our lives crossed paths and we got the chance to become the friends we were. I wish we had more time for more amazing memories. I’ll forever be jealous of those who got to spend more of the 24 years with you! You were one of a kind, smart, funny and always up for any adventure. You made all work days more bearable! I will forever cherish every moment we had together, from our boat trips to teaching you how to shoot a gun, to all our clam digger lunch dates and more! Thank you for making the trip back to New Brunswick in October for my wedding, that was one heck of a party! You were so ready to change the world and I know you’ve achieved that in many ways! My condolences to all your family and friends"

Rehhorn grew up in Orillia and enjoyed sports. The Patrick Fogarty Catholic Secondary School graduate was a competitive swimmer with the Orillia Channel Cats.

The 149 passengers on board and eight crew members on flight ET302 were killed six minutes after takeoff Sunday. The cause of the accident is not yet known.

Ethiopian Airlines has said it will investigate the cause, along with the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority and the Ethiopian Transportation Authority.