BOISE -- Micron announced Saturday they have appointed a new Chief Executive Officer, following the death of longtime Micron Chairman and CEO Steve Appleton.

Appleton died Friday when the experimental plane he was flying crashed at the Boise Airport.
Now, Mark Durcan has been named Micron's new CEO. He is 51 years old and has served as President and Chief Operating Officer since 2007. He joined the company in 1984.

This is a turnaround for Durcan, who last week announced his intention to step down in August.

Durcan said, while he's saddened by Steve's loss, that he'll continue to move the company forward.

Others who knew Appleton say his influence will continue to show on this company, and the whole community, for years to come.

Saturday at the Boise Airport, it was relatively quiet, with almost no sign of the horrifying plane crash from Friday that took Appleton's life.

When I saw the smoke a couple seconds later, I figured it was probably bad, said Joe Barnes, a pilot himself, who saw the crash. I saw the fire trucks and the emergency vehicles running over to the scene. We had a bunch of people coming out of the building looking and seeing what we could do, seeing if we could help.

But there was nothing he, or anyone else could do, Appleton was dead.

It's sad, it's really sad, said Barnes.

Flags are still flying at half staff at Micron Headquarters, with flowers on the lawn; a makeshift memorial for their lost leader.

Condolences continue to be posted on Facebook, with one long-time Micron employee writing: He set an example of how to run a company right. He cared about his employees.

He really contributed a lot to the University of Idaho, and to higher education throughout the state, said Ysabel Bilbao with the University of Idaho.

Those in the education community remember the work of Appleton's creation: the Micron Foundation. That foundation has donated millions of dollars to his alma mater Boise State, the University of Idaho, College of Western Idaho and other schools.

I think the biggest thing about Steve Appleton, and what his legacy will really be, is instead of talking about the importance of higher education, he actually moved on it, said Bilbao.

While his legacy of giving will live on, those who knew Appleton well are still mourning his loss.

For me, I just feel the loss of an unbelievable friend and man, said Boise State men's tennis coach Greg Patton. He was a man of substance. I don't think there's anybody who could say that he wasn't.

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