Sister And Brother-In-Law Of Broadway And Smash Actress Megan Hilty Are Dead Following A Plane Crash

Megan Hilty on Smash.
(Image credit: NBC)

Tragedy has struck the family of Megan Hilty, the Tony-nominated Broadway actress who appeared on the NBC musical drama Smash. Megan’s sister, Lauren Hilty, and her family were killed in a plane crash near Seattle, Washington, on September 4. Lauren — who was pregnant — her husband, Ross Mickel, and their child, Remy, were among the nine passengers who were on board a floatplane that crashed into Puget Sound near Whidbey Island.

It’s unknown what caused the single-engine de Havilland DHC-3 Otter to go down, TMZ reports, and a search to recover the nine passengers and pilot was suspended on Monday. Just one of the 10 victims’ bodies was reported to have been found. Megan Hilty has not spoken out publicly about her sister’s death, but Ross Mickel’s family released a statement to local news channel King 5

We are deeply saddened and beyond devastated at the loss of our beloved Ross Mickel, Lauren Hilty, Remy and their unborn baby boy, Luca. Our collective grief is unimaginable. They were a bright and shining light in the lives of everyone who knew them. Although their time with us was too short, we will carry their legacy forward.

The family went on to thank the United States Coast Guard and other first responders and citizens who assisted in the search and rescue efforts, and they sent condolences to the other family members and friends grieving the loss of loved ones. 

King 5 reported that the crash occurred about halfway between the tourist destination Friday Harbor in the San Juan Islands and Renton Municipal Airport. The Coast Guard released the name of the pilot, Jason Winters, as well as the other six passengers: Patricia Hicks, Sandra Williams, Luke Ludwig, Rebecca Ludwig, Joanne Mera and Gabrielle Hanna. Remy Mickel was the only child on board.

Megan Hilty may be best known for playing Ivy Lynn on Smash, but she’s had a long career on stage. She was nominated for a Tony Award in 2016 (Best Featured Actress in a Play) for her role as Brooke Ashton in Noises Off. Hilty also played Glinda the Good Witch in Wicked, and sang in 9 to 5: The Musical, Annie Get Your Gun, Little Shop of Horrors and more. She joined aforementioned series in 2012, appearing in all of the episodes of Smash’s two-season run before NBC canceled it

Since Smash, Megan Hilty has done mostly voiceover work and can be heard as KC the Koala on T.O.T.S., Ziggy on Madagascar: A Little Wild, multiple characters on TrollsTopia and Prisma on Sofia the First. She also portrayed Patsy Cline on the Lifetime movie Patsy & Loretta, as well as Lily St. Regis as a member of the cast of Annie Live! in 2021 and has appeared in shows including The Good Fight and the NBC sitcom Sean Saves the World.

We can’t imagine the grief that Megan Hilty must be feeling over the tragic loss of her sister and other family members. Our condolences go out to her and all of the victims’ friends and family during this difficult time.

Heidi Venable
Content Producer

Heidi Venable is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend, a mom of two and a hard-core '90s kid. She started freelancing for CinemaBlend in 2020 and officially came on board in 2021. Her job entails writing news stories and TV reactions from some of her favorite prime-time shows like Grey's Anatomy and The Bachelor. She graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a degree in Journalism and worked in the newspaper industry for almost two decades in multiple roles including Sports Editor, Page Designer and Online Editor. Unprovoked, will quote Friends in any situation. Thrives on New Orleans Saints football, The West Wing and taco trucks.