Clovis News

Service recalls Clovis sisters killed in crash

Mackenzie Hook's beloved blue bicycle, the flute Kaitlyn Hook played and a string of colorful lights for Rachel Hook decorated the front of Peoples Church sanctuary, where classmates, family and friends came Monday to remember the sisters who died in a plane crash.

The girls, who lived in Clovis with their mother, Brenda Hook, and stepfather Patrick Doles, died May 22 when a plane piloted by their father, U.S. Navy Cmdr. Luther H. Hook III, crashed near Fallon Municipal Airport in northern Nevada. Hook often flew the girls to Nevada to spend the weekend with him.

Family members read separate eulogies for each girl, followed by music performed by bands and choirs from the Clovis Unified schools where the sisters were students.

Mackenzie would have turned 10 on June 12. She may have been the baby of the family, Doles said, but she was a determined girl who could stand up to her older sisters.

She loved to ride her blue bicycle. "She would ask me to go with her and I should have gone more often," Doles said.

He offered words of comfort for Mackenzie's Clovis Elementary School classmates: "Know that Mackenzie is in a happy place. Find comfort in the wind on your face as you ride your bikes."

The girls' eldest sister, Jocelyn Castillo, 25, remembered Rachel's "big beautiful smile and voice of an angel."

Rachel, 12, sang in the Clark Intermediate School concert choir, which performed in her memory.

Rachel played the first-chair violin in the school orchestra. She dreamed of winning "American Idol" and seeing her name in lights.

"I know they were on their way to greatness," Castillo said of her sisters.

Another older sister, Brenda Lynn Hook, 20, said Kaitlyn was "a people person, one of the people you like to have around. She never could be mean to anyone."

Kaitlyn, 15, was a freshman at Clovis High School. She played flute, trumpet and piano, was in the band and on the track, soccer and softball teams.

"She was my baby sister, even though she was taller than me," Hook said. Kaitlyn was her confidante, she said. "I don't know what I'm going to do without her, but live one day at a time."

Doug Holck, pastor at Peoples Church, said the family has "a museum of memories" of the girls -- Mackenzie, the quiet genius, Rachel, the jokester and "A" student, and Kaitlyn, her mother's protector and an avid reader who also got A grades.

The celebration of life service for Mackenzie, Rachel and Kaitlyn lasted about two hours. The 1,700-seat sanctuary was almost full.

One of those who attended was Karen Donovan of Clovis, whose daughter was in the Clark Intermediate School orchestra with Rachel.

The service gave the girls' classmates "a kind of closure," Donovan said. "It's a way to say goodbye."