Passenger Lands Safely After Pilot Stricken Aloft
Helen Collins, age 80, was able to make a safe landing in a twin-engine Cessna 414 Monday evening in Wisconsin after her husband, John, 81, lost consciousness while flying. According to local news reports, Helen Collins called in an emergency at about 5 p.m., near Sturgeon Bay. She is not a pilot but had some training over 30 years ago, when she had soloed. An instructor flew to her side to help coach her through the landing, and they flew several practice runs over the runway, according to ABC News. At about 6 p.m., Collins made a rough landing -- after a couple of bounces, the airplane ended up in a ditch and the gear collapsed -- but she was able to escape with only minor injuries. John Collins was taken to a hospital and declared dead.
John Collins was CEO of a small manufacturing company in Sturgeon Bay. He had been flying since the 1980s and frequently volunteered his services for Angel Flight, according to ABC.