Vietnam War Pilot Survives Fiery Plane Crash in Marion County

A 73-year-old Vietnam veteran flying a single-engine plane and headed to Aurora State Airport walked away after a fiery crash in rural Marion County early Monday afternoon.

The pilot, Eugene Mitchell, from Portland, told Marion County deputies he experienced mechanical issues which led to the plane catching fire mid-flight. He made an emergency landing into a farm field in the area of Jordan Street SE and Howell Prairie Road and was able to walk away from the flaming wreckage with non-life threatening injuries.

Police say Mitchell, who has flying experience dating back his military service in Vietnam, was taken to a local hospital for his injuries where he was treated and released.

Emergency services from Aumsville Fire District, Marion County Fire District #1 and an ambulance from Santiam Hospital all responded to the scene to provide assistance.

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