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Citizens rushed to free pilot from crash

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Posted on December 29, 2016 |
By John Flowers



n1 planecrash PerleeJerome2630.jpg
PERLEY JEROME STANDS on the site of last Friday’s small plane crash just south of the Middlebury airport. Jerome was across the road from the crash site when the plane went down and he ran to the scene and pulled the pilot from the burning wreckage. The pilot did not survive. Independent photo/Trent Campbell

EAST MIDDLEBURY — Perley Jerome was starting a vehicle in the Airport Auto parking lot off School House Hill Road in East Middlebury at around 11:30 a.m. last Friday when he heard a disconcerting sputtering noise emanating from a small plane that had just taken off from the nearby Middlebury State Airport.

He became even more alarmed when the plane’s engine went silent.

“(The pilot) turned around (toward the landing strip), clipped a tree with his right wing, and went down,” Jerome recalled, the event forever seared in his memory.

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