Two escape serious injury in plane crash near airport


Tecumseh Fire Department Captain/EMT Tom Richardson speaks with pilot Jim Mynning. Photo by Mickey Alvarado.

A pleasant flight around the area on Tuesday afternoon ended abruptly for pilot Captain Jim Mynning and Tecumseh Police Officer Tim Ryan when their Piper PA 18 Super Cub plane crashed just west of Al Meyers Airport across Tecumseh-Clinton Road. Ryan said Mynning was preparing to bring the plane in for a landing when the left wing began malfunctioning, pulling them towards the bean field that surrounds the landing strip. Mynning attempted to bring the plane around, but was unable to maintain control of the aircraft due to the malfunctioning wing.

“We lost lift and crashed,” said Ryan. “Gas was pouring on us. I had to kick the doors open for us to get out of the plane.”

A press release from the Tecumseh Police Department stated that initial reports suggested the plane struck something on the runway as the pilot attempted to land. The pilot and passenger reported minor injuries. No injuries were sustained by anyone on the ground, according to the police report.

Traffic on Tecumseh-Clinton Road was interrupted over several hours while local law enforcement and the Federal Aviation Administration investigated the accident scene.

“There was a sputter and a weird sound,” said Christopher Georges, of 1010 River Acres Drive. “I thought it was a truck on the road that lost control or something. I heard it hit the trees and I came running and saw the lines shaking.”

The plane landed just outside the fence in Georges’ back yard. It became entangled in phone and cable lines that run just behind the houses off the north entrance to Red Mill Drive, but no damage was done to Georges’ property.

The plane crashed at approximately 2:42 p.m. and was removed by 4:45 p.m. It was strapped on a Barron’s Towing flatbed truck and taken across the road to the airport.

Ryan credits Mynning’s experience as a pilot for the successful emergency landing where neither man was seriously injured.

“He’s an amazing pilot,” Ryan said. “He has logged over forty-five thousand flight hours.”

Mynning received Pilot of the Year in 1974 from United Airlines for landing a United Airlines 737 where the engine was dangling. Thanks to Mynning’s expert navigation, there were no injuries to anyone on board that flight.

Mynning, who was born in 1930, had his first solo flight at age 16 in 1946, and was a commercial pilot from 1955 to 1990. On May 21, 2011, the aviator was inducted into the Michigan Aviation Hall of Fame.

The Super Cub is a two-seater, single engine monoplane. The small plane has a wingspan of 35 feet with a length of 22 feet five inches, and a cruising speed of 112 miles per hour.

The incident is still under investigation by the Federal Aviation Administration.


Tecumseh Herald


110 E. Logan St.
P.O. Box 218
Tecumseh, MI 49286

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