Gwen Shamblin and Joe Lara had Florida MAGA rally on itinerary before plane crash
'Tarzan: The Epic Adventures' actor Joe Lara and his Christian diet guru wife Gwen Shamblin Lara were among the seven people who died in a plane crash. The plane was bound for Palm Beach International Airport from Smyrna, 25 miles southeast of Nashville. Was the couple headed to a Donald Trump rally? Or perhaps a MAGA rally?
Along with the Laras, five other members of their Remnant Fellowship Church in Tennessee may have been en route to a Florida MAGA rally when their small private plane crashed, killing them all. While rescue work is currently ongoing, officials worry that a complete investigation into the crash could take up to two years. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating that crash.
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Rescue workers are currently working towards retrieving human remains and parts of the plane wreckage found at Percy Priest Lake crash site. As per recent reports, authorities say the plane was bound for Palm Beach International Airport, but it wasn't immediately clear who was piloting it. Rutherford County Fire and Rescue Captain John Ingle reportedly said that recovery operations were ongoing at the lake and would continue throughout Monday, May 31. "The debris field is approximately a half of a mile wide," he said.
The Cessna C501, which was registered to Joe and Gwen, crashed into a lake in Smyrna shortly after taking off from Rutherford County Airport before it slammed into the water reportedly at 10.53 am. The Remnant Fellowship Church confirmed the deaths of Joe and Gwen Lara, Gwen's son-in-law Brandon Hannah and church leaders David and Jennifer Martin and Jonathan and Jessica Walters.
So if the plane was on its way to the Palm Beach International Airport, were the Laras headed to a Trump rally? That's a possibility.
According to a report in DailyMail, Kimberly Fletcher, a Trump supporter who was scheduled to speak at a MAGA rally near Palm Beach on Sunday, May 31, 2021, recently took to social media to reveal that one of the event's sponsors was on board the plane when it crashed. "I am heartbroken. I am in Florida for an event I'm speaking at tomorrow. One of the sponsors was flying in on a private plane with some friends," Fletcher wrote in a Facebook post alongside a link to a news article about the plane crash. "The plane went down and it looks there are no survivors. Please pray for them, their families and the church members where they pastor." While Fletcher did not specify which of the seven people on board was the person who helped sponsor the 'We The People: Patriot's Day' rally, she expressed remorse.
At the same time, it isn't clear yet if all seven people on board were attending the rally. The Laras could very well be Trump supporters. According to Federal Election Commission data, last year, Gwen Shamblin Lara donated at least $3,000 to the Trump Make America Great Again Committee and the Trump 2020 campaign. The rally was held at the Martin County Fairgrounds and included speeches from Trump ally Roger Stone, according to an advertisement for the event.
In a statement late on Sunday, May 30, the church confirmed the deaths of the seven members. "The seven Remnant Fellowship leaders lost May 29, 2021, were some of the finest and most loving people that you would ever come across. During this horrible tragedy, our church would greatly appreciate prayers," the statement read. "We want everyone who was affected, especially the children of the passengers, to know that they are very loved and our church will be taking special care of the children’s needs in these coming years."