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Monday October 22, 2018

lunch meat maker owned crashed plane

Thursday, December 28, 2017 16:20 PM
Written by Stan Maddux
Category: Local News

A maker of pre-packaged deli meats sold in supermarkets nationwide had its Cessna 525A crash while landing Wednesday morning in Michigan City.

The pilot and a passenger suffered just minor injuries but were taken to a hospital as a precaution and later released, said Jessica Ward, manager of the Michigan City Municipal Airport.

The names of the two men involved in the crash were not released.

According to Federal Aviation Administration records, the plane is owned by Van E Aviation, LLC in care of Land O'Frost, Inc. out of Munster.

The plane took off from DuPage airport west of Chicago at 6:22 a.m. then 22 minutes later arrived in Michigan City, according to FAA records.

It was a rough landing, though, with the pilot revealing he overshot the runway,according to Tony Drzewiecki, pubic information officer for the Michigan City Fire Department.

Ward said the plane with room for about a half dozen passengers came in from the north and touched down on the 4,100 foot long runway.

The plane unable to stop on time went off the end of the runway and crashed through a 10 foot high section of metal fence marking the southern perimeter of the airport property along U.S 20 about a quarter mile west of Interstate 94.

Ward said the plane also took out a metal guard rail a few feet behind the fence and crossed all four lanes of U.S 20 before coming to rest 300 yards to the south in an open field.

Fortunately, there were no encounters with any motor vehicles.

''With that plane skidding across the highway, we're lucky there wasn't any traffic coming from either direction,'' Drzewiecki said.

According to police, the plane suffered extensive damage that included a lost wing and landing gear.

Ward said runway had no ice on it from being plowed the previous evening and just a slight dusting of snow from the light frozen precipitation falling when the crash occurred.

She said the pilot's destination was Michigan City.

''I'm just glad everybody is o.k.,'' Ward said.

Ward said about 22 small aircraft a week use the airport during the winter compared to roughly 24 per day the remainder of the year.

According to the company's website, Land O'Frost is a third generation family-owned business that provided storage for people's meats when founded on the south side of Chicago in 1941.

In 1952, the company began producing wafer-sliced beef along with frozen meat pies and TV dinners then in 1969 opened its first lunch meat processing plant in Lansing, Illinois.,

Another processing plant opened in 2007 at Madisonville, Kentucky.

The headquarters relocated to Munster in 2014.

According to the company website, Land O'Frost has more than 1,000 employees at three location and has grown from a regional to a national brand.
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