Two recovering following plane crash in West Liberty

WEST LIBERTY, Ky. (WYMT) - It was supposed to be a lazy Sunday afternoon, said Barbara Stacy, "Well, I was sitting in my easy chair, we had just gotten in from church, and I noticed a plane fly by."

Stacy who lives on Dogwood Lane, by the end of the runway at the West Liberty Airport, said that's not uncommon but she couldn't help but notice how low the plane was flying past her window. She said if a plane is that low and passing her house, "They're out of luck, because there's not enough runway left for them to get up in the air."

That's when she made the off-handed joke to her nephew visiting from North Carolina.

"She was in a joking manner and was like, 'I hope you don't actually see one (a plane) crash,'" recalled Jonathan Herring, Stacy's nephew.

What they didn't know was that's exactly what happened, and they didn't realize it until Stacy passed by the plane on her way to a neighbor's house.

"It's very wild," added Herring.

According to Brian Scalf, the West Liberty Fire Chief, the two men were taking off from the airport around 1:30 Sunday afternoon, when they reported hearing a strange noise coming from the plane's engine. The chief relayed the men described the noise like the engine was stalling, so the pilot decided to abort the takeoff. The problem was there wasn't enough runway left to stop the plane and the aircraft went racing off the air strip and down the hill and into a ditch below.

"I was just standing under the car port and I saw him (the pilot) coming down the runway and I knew he was going too fast," described Paula Nickell, who lives just past the end of the runway.

Nickell and her husband, Dwayne, said they were about to go for a Sunday drive on their motorcycle when they say the plane racing toward the end of the runway.

"It just skidded right off the tarmac, and right off of the grass run," said Dwayne, "my wife was standing in the car port and she said it just came over the hill, hit and bounced."

Dwayne, a firefighter in West Liberty, said the two men were still inside when he rode up to the plane. He said the passenger had a knee injury from hitting the dashboard, but the pilot had a huge cut on his head, likely from hitting the windshield, said Nickell.

So, the firefighter began helping to pair from the plane and even used towels to put pressure on the bleeding pilot.

"Thank God, they weren't hurt any more seriously than they actually (were)," stated Dwayne, who added the men were from Northern Kentucky.

Chief Scalf said by phone the men were taken for treatment to the hospital in West Liberty and he described their injuries as minor.

Still the sight of the smashed up plane, isn't uncommon for the residents at the far end of Dogwood Lane. They say there have been three planes with close calls in the recent years. They say one plane clipped the corner of a house at the end of the runway, and just last year another plane crashed into the same house's front yard.


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