A mother of three was hit by a plane wing at an Okla. airport
A single mother of three was killed when she hit the wing of a plane while landing on a lawn mower while working at a small airport in Oklahoma, officials said.
Samantha Hayes, 27, was riding at Broken Bow Airport around 3:30 p.m. Friday when a 1972 Beechcraft Bonanza A36 plane arrived to land, Sarah Stewart, a spokeswoman for the Oklahoma Department of Public Safety, told The Washington Post. .
Pilot James Baxter, 70, noticed Hayes and tried to take off to avoid hitting her, but a wing hit the woman in the head, killing her because he couldn’t get up fast enough, Stewart said.
Hayes was pronounced dead at the scene.
She worked in the Broken Bow City Park Department, a police official told The Post.
Baxter was not injured in the tragic accident and no charges have been filed, officials said.
The accident is still under investigation.
“We are deeply saddened and saddened by the passing of one of our team members,” City Manager Vicki Patterson told The Post in an email. “This is an extremely tragic incident, and we extend our deepest sympathies to the employee’s family, friends, and co-workers. Our first priority is always the safety of employees and the public. It is critical that we determine how this incident occurred.”
“Currently we cannot provide further details until the investigation by the Highway Patrol and the Federal Aviation Administration is completed,” she added.
The small airport, which has a 3,200-foot asphalt runway, is not staffed by air traffic controllers, meaning pilots have to personally announce their landings and take-offs over the radio. Officials said the weather at the time of the accident was clear.
Hayes’ friends mourned her loss with emotional messages on Facebook.
“Samantha Hayes was an amazing mother to her three children! She was a single mother who worked hard to provide them with a safe, loving home! These children knew they were loved every day, all day long!” Darlene Tadlig wrote.
“Their children will know how much their mother loves them. We never know when these things will happen, but they can happen, and they did for her,” she wrote.
“God knew there was a plan for her and it’s hard for us to process it because she’s still needed here but his ways are higher than our ways even when it’s hard to understand,” Tadli added.
Another friend, Brooke Dean, described Hayes as a “beautiful, sweet soul.”
“I loved getting to know you and hanging out. We never had a dull night, we would always end up laughing the whole time or doing something off the wall like trying to catch an eagle in the middle of the night when you thought it was a chicken or cutting our legs off while crawling under the barbed wire,” Dean wrote: “Fence To go to the frog.”
“I will forever cherish those memories we made, they are so precious to me. I wish we had more time, Sammy. We love you,” she added.
Carly Hayes, a third, promised that the tragic mother “has a whole family that will make sure their kids are good.”