On a windy morning, Floria Hakimi smiled as she snapped her photo on the steps leading to a small plane that was supposed to lead her to a workshop for real estate agents in Southern California.
She posted on her Instagram account a picture of herself wearing sunglasses and a wide smile: “Traveling to Los Angeles.”
Later that day, the twin-engine Cessna 414 carrying the 62-year-old estate agent and four others landed from the sky and crashed into an Orange County parking lot, killing all on board.
Hakimi and two of the victims were co-workers at Pacific Union International, a real estate firm in the San Francisco Bay Area. One of them, 42-year-old Lara Shepard, was married to 53-year-old Plane pilot Scott Shepherd.
Ghandan’s brother said that Nassim Ghandan, 29, saw Hakimi as a mentor in the real estate industry. Hakimi’s 32-year-old son, Navid Hakimi, was also one of the passengers on the flight.
Terry Tiffany, a spokeswoman for Pacific Union, said the group is leaving to attend the Tom Ferry Success Summit in Anaheim, California, a business conference that real estate agents are famous for.
Ghandan loved to cook Persian and American food and loved to dance. She grew up in the Gulf region and quickly made friends with everyone she met, said Arian Gendan, her 19-year-old brother.
He said, “She was bigger than life, and she always laughed.” “Just always the life of the party.”
The plane took off from Buchanan Field Airport in Concord, California, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.
The pilot declared a state of emergency but did not mention the nature of his problem before crashing about a mile (1.6 km) from John Wayne Airport and crashing into four parked cars, said National Transportation Safety Board investigator Albert Nixon.
Nixon did not know how much time elapsed between the call and the breakdown.
NTSB officials said the plane was en route to the airport southeast of Los Angeles and was allowed to land when it crashed into the parking lot of Staples’ store and CVS pharmacy.
Orange County fire officials said there was no fire and no one was injured on the ground.
Witnesses watched in terror as the plane flew low over the shopping area near the upscale South Coast Plaza mall and crashed into the parking lot. Customers ran out of a nearby restaurant and saw the wreckage of a white plane with green and blue trimmings.
Naveed Hakimi, from Los Angeles, was a musician and DJ. His old friend Pantie Tady said he also has a son. Last month, Hakimi posted a selfie of himself with his mother on his Instagram page, saying she came on a surprise visit on his birthday.
He wrote, “Spending the day with her and my beautiful son is literally all I could ask for.” “My heart is exploding!”
According to the Pacific Union, the Shepherds family in Diablo, California has two children, ages 5 to 7. Neighbor Kate Montgomery said he was a great cook, and she knew the art.
“The entire Pacific Union family mourns the loss of our colleagues, family and friends,” company CEO Mark A. McLaughlin said in a statement. “Life is precious and we focus on satisfying loved ones affected by this devastating event.”
The Federal Aviation Administration and NTSB are investigating the cause of the accident.
The plane is registered to a San Francisco-based real estate consulting firm, a Class 3, according to an FAA database. The company’s phone call was not answered immediately.
Cessna 1973 certified with the FAA through October 2019, records appear online.