Insurance Agency Tragedy: 3 Hilb Group Executives Die in Plane Crash
The Hilb Group, headquartered in Richmond, Va., has confirmed that three regional executives died in a plane crash near Roatán, Honduras, on Saturday, May 18.
Rob Miller, regional leader, Hilb Group – New England, and managing director of Dowling & O’Neil Insurance; Brad Post, regional leader, Hilb Group, Tri-State; and Rick Tepel, regional leader, Hilb Group, Mid-Atlantic, and managing director of Raley, Watts & O’Neil, were traveling together on a personal fishing trip in Honduras, according to a Hilb Group spokesperson.
According to a report by La Prensa, an independent newspaper in Honduras, the single-engine plane crashed off the coast of Roatán, an island about 40 miles off the Honduran coast in the Caribbean. La Prensa reported the plane fell into the sea minutes after taking off from the Roatán Airport. The make of the plane was a Piper PA-32-260, local authorities said.
“We are deeply saddened and shocked by the tragic loss of our colleagues and friends Brad Post, Rob Miller and Rick Tepel,” said Ricky Spiro, CEO of Hilb Group, in an emailed statement. “Our heartfelt condolences go out to their families and loved ones, as well as to the families of others lost in this terrible accident.”
The Hilb Group is a middle market insurance agency and is a portfolio company of Boston-based private equity firm, ABRY Partners. The company now has 77 offices in 18 states.
Tepel began his insurance career in 1993 with J. Frank Raley Insurance which later evolved into Raley, Watts & Associates (RWA). In 2004, Tepel purchased RWA and became the sole owner. In 2006, RWA acquired Alger & O’Neill Insurance and rebranded as Raley, Watts & O’Neill. Then in March of 2016, RWO was acquired by The Hilb Group.
In April 2016, Mahwah, N.J.-based P.A. Post Agency and its subsidiaries joined The Hilb Group. At that time, Post served as president of the agency and continued to lead the company. The P.A. Post Agency, founded in 1915, was a fourth-generation family-owned independent agency that specialized in transportation.
Dowling & O’Neil, an independent agency based in Hyannis, Mass., was acquired by The Hilb Group in February 2016. Miller, co-owner of Dowling & O’Neil at the time, continued on as a leader of the firm in the Hyannis location under their current name after The Hilb Group acquisition. Founded in 1841, Dowling & O’Neil provides property/casualty insurance services with specialty niches in high net worth personal lines and health care facilities.