The South Dakota husband and wife who crash-landed their small private plane on a Wyoming highway Monday survived, and are recovering in Colorado.
Mark and Joyce Buxbaum’s personal airplane’s engine failed over the highway between Medicine Bow and Hanna, Wyoming on Monday morning, the couple’s friend, Mike Bass, said in a Friday email to Cowboy State Daily.
The plane collided with the road and flipped over before skidding to the side of the highway. It was a kit-style plane originally sold to be assembled by its owner, Bass said.
“Joyce was able to crawl out of the overturned aircraft,” he said, but Mark Buxbaum was trapped under it until enough passersby arrived to lift the plane off him and pull him out.
Bass said both were taken to Rawlins for treatment, where Mark Buxbaum had surgery to stabilize him for air transport to an intensive-care unit in Loveland, Colorado.
Joyce Buxbaum remained in the Rawlins hospital until she was released Thursday. She traveled to Loveland, “to be with Mark,” said Bass.
Mark Buxbaum has undergone three surgeries in the Loveland facility, where he remains sedated.
“The doctors feel they have addressed all his injuries, now it’s just time needed to heal,” Bass said.
Joyce Buxbaum on Wednesday posted a prayer request to her Facebook page.
“Prayers needed for Mark. We were involved in an emergency landing that went badly and (the) plane flipped,” she wrote. “He is going in for (his third) surgery later today. I’m injured but not critical.”
The pair had flown that weekend from their home in South Dakota to Kanab, Utah, according to earlier posts by Joyce Buxbaum.
She posted photos of her husband on Sept. 3, standing in front of the parked white plane with scenic red hills in the background. That day she also posted photographs of her in-flight view over Utah.
Chris and Kate Williams, along with their children and nephews, stopped to help the couple after the plane crashed between their two family vehicles traveling on the highway, Chris Williams told Cowboy State Daily in a Tuesday interview.
Debris showered the car containing “the kids,” said Chris Williams, adding that his son Fisher, daughter Elizabeth, and nephew Chet were in the second car together and watched the plane hit the highway.
Chet, a sophomore in high school, pulled the car over to help the Buxbaums.
When Chris Williams looked in his rearview mirror and didn’t see “the kids’” car, he looped around and also helped the Buxbaums, he said.
The Williams family and other passersby, including a veteran paramedic who had served in Iraq, lifted the plane from Mark Buxbaum before the ambulance arrived, said Chris Williams.
Williams did not catch the Iraqi veteran’s name, he said.