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6 Killed as Plane Crashes Into Texas Home

August 04, 2004|From Associated Press

LAKEWAY, Texas — A small plane crashed into a house bordering a golf course in suburban Austin and burst into flames Tuesday, killing the six people aboard. Three people inside the two-story home escaped unharmed.

Two children -- one who was 18 months old -- their parents, a pilot and another passenger were killed after the twin-engine prop plane refueled and took off from Lakeway Airpark just before noon, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman John Clabes said.

The family was apparently from Edmond, Okla., and the pilot was from Oklahoma City, Clabes said. He did not know where the sixth victim was from. He declined to release the victims' names.

"We just looked up and saw the aircraft and it was going slow, wings level," said Bert Brown, a retired American Airlines pilot who was golfing when the plane crashed. "I saw him try to either make a left-hand turn or stalling out. With that, he lost lift and crashed right into the ground."

Laurence and Jacqueline Elliott, along with an appliance repairman, were in the house but escaped just before the crash, said a friend, Ellen Roberts. She said Jacqueline Elliott described the scene as "an inferno."

Todd Moore, who lives about 600 yards from the crash site, said neighbors told him that Laurence Elliott saw the plane approaching as he stood on an upper patio of his house, and he hurried his wife and the repairman out of the house.

The plane hit a retaining wall between the home and the golf course, then plowed into the back patio area.

The plane's cockpit was lodged in the charred rear of the house, and small pieces of it littered the yard.

All six bodies had been recovered from the crash site by Tuesday evening, authorities said.

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