Elderly Woman Lands Plane After Pilot Husband Goes Unconscious

by Terry on April 3, 2012 · 11 comments

in Feel Good Pictures, Feel Good Type Events, People Feel Good Stories

A Door County woman had to make an emergency landing early Monday evening.

Shortly after 5:00, the Door County’s Dispatch Center got an unexpected call, from an aircraft in trouble.

“A couple in their 80s were flying and he went unconscious due to a medical condition he had. She took over the aircraft. She’s not a licensed pilot and has very little (knowledge) on flying an aircraft,” explained Door County Sheriff Terry Vogel.

The couple were in a twin engine Cessna airplane.

At this point she was about 6 miles south of Sturgeon Bay.


The woman reported that she needed to land immediately. Her right engine had lost power because it was out of fuel.

(So picture this now… Your in a plane, you are not a pilot, your pilot (husband) has become unconscious, and one of your engines has stopped working because you are out of fuel… CAN YOU SAY OH SHIT #1 & #2!!!).

Luckily, authorities were able to call on a local pilot who got up in another aircraft to get up and help guide her along as he felt that being up would help him with things like determining air speed, and how to descend the aircraft (remember she is no pilot). He was able to communicate with her to help bring her down

But it wasn’t necessarily a smooth landing (CAN YOU SAY OH SHIT #3).

“I saw them come down, and then like the nose of the plane just bumped, then they kind of flew back up and then they landed,” said witness Zoe Hirthe.

Authorities say the woman was taken to the hospital with minor injuries. Her husband was also taken to the hospital. Officials say he was pronounced dead from the medical condition that cause him to lose consciousness on the plane.

“We’re very proud of her for doing what she did.  It was a very difficult situation with her husband unconscious next to her.  It took a lot to collect her thoughts and get that thing landed,” Vogel explained.

Helen Collins landed this plane despite having no flying experience



This woman and this pilot are SIMPLY AWESOME in that Feel Good Depot Kind Of Way!!! My prayers to the lady and her lost loved one but to overcome such obstacles in spite of the situation is AMAZING. YOU PEOPLE ROCK

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