Israeli Entrepreneur and Wife Killed in Plane Crash

( – A tech venture capitalist and his wife were killed in a plane crash just along the border of California and Nevada.

Liron Petrushka and his wife Naomi were aboard their high-performance aircraft when it crashed during an attempt to land the plane at the Truckee Tahoe Airport in California during a snowstorm, officials said. Liron was the one piloting the plane at the time of the incident.

According to officials from the Federal Aviation Administration, visibility at the time of the crash was extremely poor, making Petrushka miss his intending landing site. The plane crashed near some train tracks close to the airport. A number of local residents watched the plane as it flew dangerously close to the ground and heard the crash, but no homes were hit in the incident. The rails, however, will need to undergo repairs.

Petrushka, who ventured into investing a few years ago, has lived with his family in California for some time. The company where he works, UpWest, is a seed fund that invests in promising ventures launched by Israeli entrepreneurs. Naomi’s most recent affiliation was with the University of Nevada, Reno. The school confirmed that she served as an adjunct professor for its economics department from 2021 to 2023.

In a statement, UpWest said that it was “devastated” and “heartbroken” by the deaths of the Petrushkas. Liron and Naomi were described by the company as being “a significant force in the building and success” of the business since its inception.

Petrushka, who also briefly played soccer in Israel before moving to the U.S., joined the firm in 2012 as a partner, and transitioned to being an adviser in 2017.

The couple leaves behind three sons, who were identified in the UpWest statement as David, Scott, and Jordan.

The FAA is also expected to investigate the circumstances surrounding the crash in the coming days and weeks.

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