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Author Topic: More sadness for the France family and NASCAR  (Read 886 times)

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Offline Greasemonkey

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More sadness for the France family and NASCAR
« on: July 11, 2007, 06:34:26 AM »

(CNN) -- A small plane crashed into two homes Tuesday in Sanford, Florida, near Orlando, killing five people -- the pilot, his passenger, and an adult and two children inside the houses.
The two homes hit were reduced to smoking rubble. Only portions of their outside walls, blackened from the explosion and fire, remained standing.
The fatalities include people from both homes -- a mother and her 6-month-old son in one home and a 4-year-old girl in the other, said Cleo Cohen, Sanford police spokeswoman.
The 4-year-old's parents were taken to an Orlando hospital, and her brother, 10, was transferred to a Cincinnati, Ohio, burn center, Cohen said.
He had third-degree burns over 80 to 90 percent of his body, according to Sanford Fire Department investigator Matt Minnetto.
Michael Klemm was piloting the plane, Cohen said. Klemm was a senior captain with NASCAR Aviation, a statement from NASCAR said.
The passenger, Dr. Bruce Kennedy, was the husband of International Speedway Corp. President Lesa France Kennedy. She is the daughter of the longtime head of NASCAR, Bill France Jr., who died in June.
One off-duty firefighter was treated for smoke inhalation, Cohen told reporters.
In a written statement, Florida Gov. Charlie Crist thanked that firefighter, whom he identified as Ryan Cooper. Crist said he joins Floridians in prayer and grief for the families of those killed. "My heart goes out to my friend Dr. Bruce Kennedy and all involved with this terrible incident," he said. "Bruce was a great friend and a great doctor from an outstanding family. He was gracious beyond words, and his death is a terrible loss for Florida."
The twin-engine Cessna 310, registered to Competitor Liaison Bureau, had taken off from Daytona Beach, Florida, heading to Lakeland, Florida. It declared an emergency with smoke in the cockpit and was attempting to land at Orlando Sanford International Airport, said Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen.
Instead, the plane crashed about five miles from the airport in a neighborhood called The Preserve at Lake Monroe.
"First I heard a plane flying overhead. It sounded like a semi-truck coming down the road trying to slow down. As soon as it hit, it exploded into flames," a witness told CNN affiliate WESH 2 News.
"A boy jumped out of the second story. He was on fire and extinguished himself. The wife ran out of the front door. She was on fire. Someone was screaming about a baby still inside the house," a witness told WESH.
Terry Boyd, who lives two blocks from the crash site, told CNN he heard the plane overhead and then the explosion, which slightly shook his own house.
"There was a quick run of the plane and then you heard the big boom," said Boyd, who also provided CNN with pictures of the scene. "There was a lot of fuel in it because you kept hearing the booms over time."
Boyd, who only recently moved to the area, said neighbors were stunned, sitting on the ground and "shaking their heads in disbelief."
"People were gathering together, hugging each other. People were crying," he said.
"It is clear that numerous families were affected by this terrible tragedy and unfortunately several people were deceased or seriously injured," NASCAR said in a statement. "Our deepest sympathies and prayers are with all of those who were involved in this tragic accident and their families."
The incident is the latest of several plane crashes with NASCAR connections.
In October of 2004, a plane owned by the Hendrick Motorsports organization crashed on its way to a NASCAR race, killing all 10 aboard, including four relatives of team owner Rick Hendrick.

NASCAR team owner Jack Roush survived a plane crash on his 60th birthday in 2002. He was the only one aboard the ultra-light plane, which crashed into a lake in Troy, Alabama.
NASCAR champion racer Alan Kulwicki was killed in an April 1993 airplane accident while flying to a race in Bristol, Tennessee. NASCAR driver Davey Allison died in July of the same year when the helicopter he was piloting crashed on the infield at Talladega Superspeedway near Talladega, Alabama.


Greasemonkey.

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More sadness for the France family and NASCAR
« on: July 11, 2007, 06:34:26 AM »

 


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