Mom of Three Fatally Struck by Landing Plane at Airport

A tragic incident unfolded at a small airport in Oklahoma when a single mother of three was fatally hit by the wing of a landing plane while she was operating a lawn mower. The unfortunate event took place at Broken Bow Airport around 3:30 p.m. on Friday. Samantha Hayes, 27, was on the mower when a 1972 Beechcraft Bonanza A36 aircraft made its landing.

The pilot of the plane, James Baxter, 70, spotted Hayes and attempted to ascend again to avoid a collision. However, he was unable to gain altitude quickly enough, and a wing of the plane struck Hayes in the head, according to the Oklahoma Highway Patrol. Hayes was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident.

Baxter, who was unharmed in the incident, has since been charged, as per official reports. The circumstances surrounding the accident are still under investigation. It remains unclear whether Hayes was an employee at the airport, which has a 3,200-foot runway and lacks air-traffic controllers. This means pilots are responsible for announcing their own landings and takeoffs over the radio.

Hayes’ friends took to Facebook to express their grief and share heartfelt messages. Darlene Tadleigh, a friend of Hayes, described her as a “wonderful great mom to her 3 babies” and a hardworking single mother who provided a safe and loving home for her children. Tadleigh assured that Hayes’ children would always know how much their mother loved them.

Another friend, Brooke Dean, remembered Hayes as a “sweet beautiful soul.” Dean shared fond memories of their time together, including humorous and adventurous moments. She expressed her wish for more time with Hayes and assured her love for the departed friend.

Carley Hayes, another friend, assured that the children of the deceased mother would be well taken care of by their extended family. The tragic incident has left a community in mourning and a family grappling with an unexpected loss.