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Memorials planned for Flying Samaritans killed in Mexico plane crash

Public memorials have been planned to remember three of the people from San Luis Obispo County who were killed in an airplane crash in Mexico last week.

A public memorial honoring Dr. Graciela Sarmiento of Arroyo Grande is planned for 1 p.m. Friday at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, located at 501 Fair Oaks Ave. in Arroyo Grande.

The following day, friends and family will pay tribute to Dr. James Thornton, a plastic surgeon who lived in Arroyo Grande and kept his office in San Luis Obispo. A public service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday at First Presbyterian Church, 981 Marsh St. in San Luis Obispo.

A candlelight vigil for former Cal Poly student Andrew Thiel is set for 5 p.m. Monday at the University Union Plaza on the campus.

Funeral arrangements for the fourth person killed in the crash, Roger Lyon of Cayucos, are being handled by Reis Family Mortuary. A date for his service has not yet been set.

Sarmiento, Thornton, Lyon and Thiel were on a medical mission with the all-volunteer group, the Flying Samaritans, when their plane crashed in Baja California.

— Stacy Daniel

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