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PLANE CRASH: Two Die In Dense Fog

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When authorities responded to calls of a plane crash, they knew the dense fog was a problem, but they had no idea one of the victims was one of their own.

The Iowa State Patrol says a small privately-owned plane came down onto Highway 31 about 2 1/2 miles south of Correctionville around 8 o’clock Saturday night. Multiple authorities from surrounding departments came to assist with the fiery crash.

Officials say three people were on the plane, rescue crews were unable to save the two passengers.

One of them, 53-year-old Lee Schroder was a long-time volunteer fire fighter in Anthon. The other passenger, 55-year-old James Smith of Correctionville also died.

The pilot, 70-year-old Gaylen Knaack of Correctionville, suffered severe burns.

The heavy fog prevented an air ambulance from landing to rescue him, so Knaack had to be taken by ground ambulance to the hospital.

During the response efforts, an ambulance traveling to the scene hit a deputy’s vehicle. Dense fog is being blamed for both crashes.  Highway 31 was shut down for some time.