Monday marks nine years since 50 people were killed in the Flight 3407 crash in Clarence Center.
Jennifer Quimby's father was on the Colgan Air flight from Newark, New Jersey to Buffalo on February 12, 2009. Brad Green, Sr. was 53.
In the years since, Jennifer and her husband Mike have started their own family and talk about her father often.
Jennifer used her grief to help others by writing a book called "The Good Things." It's dedicated to her dad, and is meant to help children dealing with loss.
As Jennifer reflects back nine years later, she says this time of year has a much different meaning.
"I remember a school in Buffalo making valentines for all the families, just homemade cards, saying 'we're thinking of you, we’re praying for you.' And that was meaningful because the holiday absolutely takes on a different twist now,” she said.
Now nine years later, there's a quiet sadness at the memorial site in Clarence Center. Many people chose to grieve at home, rather than where their loved ones lost their lives.
"I still after nine years would like to go in a cave in a deep hole and just crawl in there for a while and be by myself," said Tita Abraham, whose daughter Mary died in the 3407 crash. "She was my baby. She was the youngest of four siblings. She was just always there for anyone who needed her. When Mary walked into a room, everybody says she just lit up the room with her smile. She made friends with everyone."
Quimby added, "At a time where we celebrate those we love and the people that are important to us, it just holds a sadness now. My father was a family man. He loved being with my brother and I and my mom. He was quiet. He was more someone standing in the background. He was a man of faith."
They are just two of the 50 lives cut short February 12, 2009 when Colgan Air Flight 3407 fell from the sky, killing everyone on board and one man on the ground.
"We said goodbye, and I kissed her and said, 'Go with God' because that's what we say. I'm Puerto Rican, and Hispanics always say 'Go with God.' Since then, I've learned not to say that because she did go with God," said Abraham.
The National Transportation Safety Board ruled pilot error and a lack of training were the causes.
Families took that grief and turned it into action, lobbying in Washington, D.C. And in 2010, lawmakers passed the Airline Safety and FAA Extension Act — which required increased pilot training time and more rest between shifts for cockpit crews.
"There haven't been any more plane crashes since 3407. So this is working. This is a good thing. The skies are safer. Pilots are more qualified. There's more confidence and the pilots have more confidence in who is sitting next to them in the cockpit next to them," said Quimby.
And later this week, about 25 family members will be making their annual trip down to the nation's capital to lobby for safer aviation safety legislation. And while Jen and Tita won't be making that trip, they say they're grateful for those who will.
"There have been over 70 trips that the 3407 families have gone on. We show our support by writing letters when our group puts it out that letters are needed to be written to different members of Congress. I think our persistence is really making a difference," said Quimby.
The families have faced countless challenges to their legislation over the years, with the regional airlines lobbying for looser requirements. They say they have had to cancel flights because they can't get pilots with the required training necessary.
And so, nine years later, their fight still isn't over.
Spectrum News reporter Katie Gibas will be traveling with the families and have reports from D.C. later this week.