Pilot Lands Mustang After Aneurysm

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Danie Minnie was flying a Cessna Citation Mustang on Nov. 12, out of Bloemfontein for Johannesburg, South Africa, when he suffered an aneurysm -- he landed the plane safely but did not survive the larger event. Minnie, 43, suffered symptoms that included vomiting and paralysis that affected his left side. He contacted controllers who found him sounding confused. The pilot elected to return to his less populated point of departure. Minnie's brother, also a pilot, and his wife were at the airport to meet him when he landed. A local news station reported that Minnie "managed a perfect landing." Paramedics then took more than 40 minutes to remove Minnie from the aircraft as his condition worsened.

According to local news reports, Minnie was able to grab and kiss the hand of his wife as he told her that he loved her, but showed difficulty in his speech. At some point, Minnie also contacted the client he had been dispatched to retrieved and told the man that he'd lost feeling in his left side. Minnie later lost consciousness. He was admitted to intensive care and was declared brain dead two days later. Minnie's story has served as a local inspiration. He was remembered online at Iflyafrica.com as one of South Africa's most competent pilots and a man whose efforts in his final hours touched the hearts of many.