Mother of firefighter killed in crash: 'There's still that missing spot'

Mother of firefighter killed in crash: 'There's still that missing spot'

EUGENE, Ore. -- The holidays are the worst for the Charlson family.

"There's still that missing spot," said Nina Charlson.

They built their traditions for a family of four.

The Charlson family is now just three.

Scott Charlson was one of nine people killed August 5, 2008, in a helicopter crash. Looking back, Nina Charlson says she can't explain how she made it through her son's death.

"My faith has really given me a lot of stability," Nina Charlson said. "So I have that stability and I have a peace that surpasses understanding."

Next week, she'll get answers. On Tuesday, the National Transportation Safety Board will release the results of its investigation into the crash that killed Scott.

The Charlsons will be there.

"I'm not angry," Nina Charlson said. "I just want to find out firsthand for myself. I want to hear with my own ears in that very room rather than see it on a screen or read it in a newspaper like everybody else because in this case I'm not everybody else."

Nina Charlson told KVAL News she wants to know why the Sikorsky S-61n was 2,000 pounds overweight and the pilot didn't know about it. There were also questions about the seats, the seat-belts and fuel tank filters.

"I know it's not going to fix anything in our case," Nina Charlson said. "But hopefully it will prevent other people from having to sit in our same circumstances. That's the best that could come out of it."

The family, once homebodies huddled around the tree on Christmas Day, now likes to get away for the holidays.
"We're trying to build new memories," said Nina Charlson.
They build new memories as they learn to a live as a family of three.
The Charlsons filed a wrongful death suit against the helicopter manufacturer, its parent company and the engine manufacturer. Nina Charlson said they settled the case last week for an undisclosed amount of money.