Tue, Jun 28, 2011
Father, Stepmother Both Fatally Injured When Their Private
Plane Went Down In Michigan
It was the second time a Fort Wayne, IN, teenager had been
involved in an airplane accident, and he has lost nearly his entire
immediate family as the result of the two tragedies.
Sixteen-year-old Austin Hatch was the only survivor when the
Beechcraft Bonanza his father was flying went down in the
northwestern portion of Michigan's lower peninsula. His father and
stepmother were both fatally injured. The airplane reportedly
impacted a garage near the Charlevoix, MI, Municipal Airport,
though few other details about the accident are available. The
family was reportedly on their way to a vacation property Austin's
father Steven co-owned with his brothers in Walloon Lake, MI,
according to the Associated Press.
Steven and Austin Hatch had survived a 2003 accident in which
the plane they were flying hit a utility pole during an emergency
landing attempt in Indiana while returning from the same vacation
property. That accident fatally injured Hatch's mother Julie, as
well as a younger brother and sister.
Hatch, reportedly a standout high school basketball player, had
just accepted a full scholarship to play for Michigan, where his
father and mother had both gone to college. The Fort Wayne News
Sentinel reports that doctors in Michigan had recently brought the
young man out of a medically-induced coma, and that they are
optimistic about his prospects for recovery.
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