Durham Drama: Man Rescued From Crashed Plane
Posted March 9, 2001
DURHAM — Two men were injured when their small airplane crashed into trees Saturday afternoon in Durham County. One of the men was pulled from the plane in a dramatic rescue.
David Jones and Jim Williams were trying to land at the Lakewood Aeropark when their single-engine Cessna hit some trees along Interstate 85 near Redwood Road around 12 p.m.
Jones was thrown out of the plane. A neurosurgeon was driving down the interstate when he saw the plane crash. He immediately checked Jones, who was taken to the hospital. His injuries were not considered life-threatening.
Williams was trapped in the plane, which was suspended in the trees. He dangled there for about an hour before firefighters were able to remove him. He suffered minor injuries.
Traffic backed up on I-85 as motorists watched the dramatic rescue.
Williams was shot down three times as a pilot in Vietnam. His wife and son watched the rescue from the ground.
"I was ready for something like [seeing the plane in the trees]," son Jimmy Williams said. "But it's shocking, even when you know it's going to be there."
There are conflicting reports as to who was piloting the plane. Investigators are not sure why it went down. Reporter:Stephanie HawcoPhotographers:Joe Frieda, Terry Cantrell