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Warsaw attorney, 3 others killed in plane crash

October 5, 2015

A solo practitioner from Warsaw and a former top racecar driver were among four Indiana men who died in a plane crash while traveling to the Notre Dame-Clemson football game.

The wreckage of the Piper PA-32 was found near Lake Hartwell on the Georgia-South Carolina border, Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Kathleen Berger said.

Authorities have not given a cause for the crash. They said the men died Friday afternoon and were flying from Warsaw, Indiana, to Clemson, South Carolina, to attend Saturday's game.

The four were Tony Elliott, 54; Charles Smith, 71; son Scott Smith, 44; and Scott Bibler, 51, Oconee County Coroner Karl Addis said.

Scott Smith was an attorney who lived in Kosciusko County, Indiana, for most of his life, and graduated from Valparaiso University Law School. He practied in criminal law, personal injury and family law. He previously was a deputy prosecutor in Allen, Kosciousko, and St. Joseph counties. Smith was admitted to practice in Indiana in 2000.

Elliott won the U.S. Auto Club national sprint car series championship in 1998 and 2000. Tony Stewart Racing posted a message on its Facebook page Saturday, calling Elliott a "fierce competitor on the track. He lauded him as a "father, husband, son, brother and friend."

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the Elliott family at this time. Godspeed & Rest In Peace," the post said.

The elder Smith was a councilman and former high school football coach. Bibler also used to coach high school football.

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