Plane crash pilot was doing volunteer work

TOWN OF OCONTO – The pilot who made a hard landing at the airport near Oconto Thursday was doing volunteer work when mechanical problems developed with his plane.

The pilot’s wife, Darlene Laws, tells FOX 11 that her husband, John Laws, was flying for Wings of Mercy. The non-profit helps transport low income patients to medical facilities.

Darlene says her husband is pretty shaken up after Thursday afternoon’s crash.

She says he was flying patients from Rochester, Minnesota home to Menominee, Michigan.

Around 3:30, Oconto Fire-Rescue crews rushed to the scene after learning John Laws had trouble because of the rain and snow.

Laws reported ice covered wings on his twin engine plane and made an emergency landing.

Officials say the plane came down hard on its landing gear, breaking the gear and causing the plane to skid off the runway on its belly.

The five people on the plane all survived. Three were hospitalized with minor injuries.

Laws was piloting his 1971 Beechcraft Baron. Officials had originally said it was a Cessna.

Darlene, who was not on the plane, tells us her husband is physically okay.

The conditions of the other people on board are unknown.

Darlene says John loves to fly, and has been a pilot for more than a dozen years.

The FAA is investigating the crash along with the Oconto County Sheriff’s Department. Neither agency would not release any details Friday.

Laws’ wife says the plane has been removed from the airport grounds. She believes it’s damaged beyond repair.

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