The family of two small plane crash victims released new details Friday about the chaotic landing in a parking lot and thanked everyone who tried to save the two women on board.
Pilot Devon Logan, 52, remains in stable condition at the hospital after Wednesday’s crash in the parking lot of a Kearny Mesa Costco store.
While her health is improving, her family says she is dealing with the loss of her mother, 78-year-old Joy Gorian, who was riding by her side when the plane went down.
According to the family’s statement, Logan and Gorian were returning from a short trip to San Bernardino Wednesday.
From what Logan can recall, the two took their fixed wing, single-engine Mooney M20L in for a landing at Montgomery Field in San Diego, but the plane bounced as she was landing – not an unusual event, the family’s statement says.
Logan decided to take off and circle around to try a second landing.
However, when Logan applied full power and started to climb, the landing gear and flaps retracted. Soon after, the engine lost power.
Logan realized she could not clear the power lines in her way, so she turned the nose down to fly under them.
“She knew she needed to turn away from the buildings ahead, so she turned toward the parking lot. She recalls starting through her emergency procedures to troubleshoot the problem,” said her family’s statement.
As the plane continued to descend, the left main landing gear may have struck an air conditioning unit on one of the buildings, and a wing struck a light pole, forcing the plane to come crashing down in the parking lot.
Fire quickly engulfed the plane.
Nearby good Samaritans, including Costco employee Robert Sears, rushed to help the partially pinned Logan and Gorian, using a fire extinguisher to fight back the flames.
After the women were freed and taken to the hospital, Gorian passed away, while Logan was treated for a compound fracture to her ankle, a broken knee, a broken tibia, broken thumbs and facial injuries.
But the victims’ family says without the help of “their heroes,” Logan may not have been with them today.
“… we want to thank the real heroes that day, the people who risked their own lives to rescue Devon and her mother from the airplane,” the family’s statement reads. They also thanked first responders, hospital staff and air traffic controllers.
Logan will remain at the hospital for an undetermined amount of time.
The family has not set a date for Gorian’s memorial service.
“In the end, the family wants to thank everyone again for all their help and support. It’s truly appreciated,” the statement says.