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Balloon crash victim spent summers in Lake Hauto

Published May 11. 2014 02:38PM

The college basketball coach who died in a fiery hot air balloon crash at a Virginia festival Friday spent her summers in Lake Hauto.

Ginny Doyle’s family, from the Philadelphia area, have owned a house on Lake Drive since the 1970s.

The Lake Hauto association sent an email this afternoon about Doyle, 44, who was an associate women’s basketball coach at the University of Richmond.

“Our prayers and thoughts go out to the family of Ginny Doyle, who was killed in a Hot Air Balloon accident, Friday evening, in Richmond, Va,” the email said.

The association said, “Ginny and her brother spent all their summers growing up at the Lake and Ginny spent countless hours playing BB and tennis. Please keep Ginny and her family in your thoughts and prayers.”

Doyle and the school's director of basketball operations, Natalie Lewis, were killed Friday after the balloon hit a power line, caught fire and crashed into some woods about 25 miles north of Richmond. Veteran pilot Daniel T. Kirk was also killed.

Doyle was known as a skilled free-throw shooter at Archbishop Ryan High School in Philadelphia. She later set the NCAA women's record with 66 consecutive free throws during her senior season at Richmond, where she graduated in 1992. The record stood until 2011.

Chris Mooney, the head coach of the men's basketball team at Richmond, was friends with Doyle when both played basketball for the Catholic high school in the late 1980s.

Mooney told The Philadelphia Inquirer that Doyle excelled at recruiting.

"She built relationships very easily because she was such a good person," Mooney told the newspaper. "And she could speak so passionately about Richmond."

Doyle had been the associate head coach at Richmond since 2011 and had been on the coaching staff since 1999. She previously was an assistant college coach at Rhode Island and East Carolina.

Doyle played for Richmond from 1990 to 1992, after transferring from George Washington University.

The first body was discovered late Friday, shortly after the crash. Crews recovered a second body Saturday, and the third was found Sunday.


The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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