Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Amazing photos: Plane, skydiver entangled in Polk County crash

MULBERRY — The strings of a Gainesville man's parachute became entangled in the wings of a small Cessna airplane practicing takeoff and landing maneuvers Saturday, causing both to crash to the ground.

The plane nose-dived into the grass landing field and the skydiver whipped through the air and landed on his back, but both men suffered only minor injuries.

Pilot Sharon Trembley, 87, of Mulberry, was flying low to the ground on his third landing pass at the South Lakeland Airport. John Frost, 49, was about 75 feet off the ground, slowly descending as the plane caught his strings and spun him around. The Cessna did a full 180-degree turn, said Tim Telford, a photographer who caught the entire accident on film.

"It was all over in about eight seconds," said Telford, 44, who lives seasonally in Mulberry.

When the plane crashed, it was as if everything went silent, Telford said. Then he and others rushed to help.

"Are you okay?" Telford asked Frost, the skydiver.

Frost said he was fine, only a little bruised, Telford recalled, and then tried to stand up.

Others grabbed Trembley from the plane, just in case it caught fire. Soon, emergency responders arrived and took the two to the hospital.

Frost was released, but doctors kept Trembley for observation.

The National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration are investigating.

Amazing photos: Plane, skydiver entangled in Polk County crash 03/08/14 [Last modified: Monday, March 10, 2014 9:02am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. St. Petersburg police investigating why civilian employees accidentally fired AR-15 semiautomatic rife inside HQ

    Blogs

    ST. PETERSBURG — An internal police investigation is looking into two civilian employees who accidentally fired a round from an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle inside St. Petersburg Police Department headquarters.

    The St. Petersburg Police Department is investigating an incident in which two civilian employees accidentally fired an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle they brought inside police headquarters. Department rules prohibit civilian employees from bringing weapons into police facilities.
  2. A 12-foot pilot whale washes ashore on Siesta Key

    Environment

    A 12-foot-long beached pilot whale appeared on the shore of Point of Rocks Beach in Siesta Key early Friday morning, according to the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office.

    The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office responded to a 12-foot whale washing ashore early Friday morning. (Sarasota Sheriff's Office)
  3. Trump signs 'VA accountability' bill, as Gus Bilirakis watches

    Blogs

    WASHINGTON - Rep. Gus Bilirakis was among a group of lawmakers on hand to see President Trump sign a "VA accountability bill that will make it easier to dismiss problem employees.

  4. In this June 18, 2012, file photo President Barack Obama and Russia's President Vladimir Putin, left, go to shake hands during their bilateral meeting at the G20 Summit in Los Cabos, Mexico. [AP photo]
  5. Gradebook podcast: Charter school fraud, budget woes and more

    Blogs

    School districts across Florida have been grappling with financial concerns they contend lawmakers did not improve with a new state education budget. Reporter Marlene Sokol joins reporter Jeff Solochek to discuss the problems as they're manifest in Hillsborough County, which has local woes beyond anything the state has …

    Hillsborough School Board member April Griffin has been asking pointed questions about the district's budget.