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Plane makes emergency landing on farm

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By Landmark News Service

ELK CREEK — Paul Joseph Doyle was on his way back to his home in Marietta, Ga., from Virginia Tech last Saturday morning, piloting his 1977 Cessna 172-N single-engine plane, when he encountered heavy fog over Elk Creek.


Doyle, 37, a sports agent, was circling the area looking for a place to make an emergency landing when he saw a break in the fog and a large field below.
The field was on the Ernest Stone property on Comers Rock Road.
Doyle almost made a perfect landing, but when his airplane got to the end of the field he was still unable to bring it to a stop. The plane clipped a fence and nose-dived into the side of a pasture on the other side of the fence.
He and his companion, Karen Shinkins, were not injured. They went to the home of Ruth Eller near the crash scene at around 11:30 a.m.
Eller said they called 911 from her home.
1st Sgt. Mike Musser of the Virginia State Police said investigators from the Federal Aviation Administration were scheduled to arrive at the crash scene Monday. State Trooper Jessie Tilson is investigating the accident.