Dad's Bear Hug May Have Saved Daughter in Plane Crash

Girl, 11, is sole survivor of Michigan tragedy
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 15, 2021 12:58 AM CST
Updated Nov 20, 2021 2:15 PM CST
Dad's Final Act May Have Saved Daughter in Plane Crash
Stock photo.   (Getty Images)

An 11-year-old is the sole survivor of a Michigan plane crash, and her mom says the girl's father may have saved her life with his final act. "He gave the best bear hugs," says Christina Perdue of her late husband, Mike Perdue, in a statement, "and I believe he grabbed our daughter and protected her. It's her last memory before the crash." Laney Perdue was hospitalized with serious injuries but is in stable condition following the Saturday afternoon crash, ABC 7 reports. In addition to her father, who was a realtor, three people died in the crash on Beaver Island in Lake Michigan: the pilot, who has not yet been publicly identified, and couple Kate Leese and Adam Kendall.

The couple was new to the area and was planning a vineyard and winery there, the Petoskey News-Review reports. The twin-engine Britton-Norman BN-2 commuter aircraft took off from Charlevoix, Mich., and crashed upon landing at Welke Airport on the island, about 32 miles away. The cause of the crash is not yet clear, but the FAA and the NTSB are investigating. "Kate and Adam were just two powerhouses," a fellow member of the local wine industry tells the Detroit News. "They were inspirational. They were just getting started with what they wanted to do. It’s tragic." (More Michigan stories.)

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