In a tragic incident at Broken Bow Airport, Oklahoma, a single mother of three lost her life when she was hit by the wing of a landing aircraft while operating a lawn mower. Samantha Hayes, 27, was performing her duties at the airport when the unfortunate accident occurred on Friday afternoon.
The aircraft involved in the accident was a 1972 Beechcraft Bonanza A36, piloted by 70-year-old James Baxter. According to Sarah Stewart, a representative from the Oklahoma Department of Public Safety, Baxter noticed Hayes and attempted to ascend to avoid a collision. However, he was unable to gain altitude quickly enough, and the wing of the plane fatally struck Hayes.
Hayes was pronounced dead at the scene. Baxter, who was unharmed, has not been charged in relation to the incident. The accident is currently under investigation by local authorities. At the time of the accident, the weather was clear, and the airport, which operates without air traffic controllers, was functioning normally.
Hayes’ friends and family have taken to social media to express their grief and share memories of her. Described as a “wonderful mom” and a “sweet beautiful soul,” Hayes was remembered for her dedication to her children and her hardworking nature. Her friends assured her that her children would always know how much their mother loved them.
The Broken Bow Airport, a small facility with a 3,200-foot asphalt runway, does not have air traffic controllers. Pilots are responsible for announcing their own landings and takeoffs. The incident has raised questions about safety measures at such airports. As the investigation continues, the community mourns the loss of Samantha Hayes, a dedicated mother and valued member of the community.