Father, son hospitalized after small plane crashes into Lake Palestine

Father, son hospitalized after small plane crashes into Lake Palestine

SMITH COUNTY (KYTX) - Two people have been taken to ETMC hospital in Tyler after the small, private plane they were riding in crashed into lake Palestine around 2:30 Friday afternoon. 

The pilot has been identified as Gary Buster, 56, of Frankston, and the passenger has been identified as his son, Aaron Buster, 31, of Greenville.

DPS trooper Jean Dark says the plane is a 1956 six-seat, multi-engine Cessna 310.

Capt. Quint Balkcom with Texas Parks and Wildlife says some boaters saw the plane lose power and crash into the lake. He says their quick thinking may have saved the victims' lives.

"They saw the plane go down, and they were able to get to the two occupants of the plane and provide them a rescue, get them to the shore and of course EMS was able to treat them, so probably very much the key to survival in this instance," he said.

It's not clear on what caused the plane to go down, but the incident happened as the plane was heading to the Berryville Airstrip from a fly-in in Mineola, according to Gayla Leary with the Aero Estates Homeowners Association.

A hospital spokesperson says that Aaron Buster is in good condition, and Gary Buster is in fair condition.

Balkcom says investigators have started to use side scan sonar to scan the bottom of the lake to try to find the plane.

DPS, the FAA and Texas Parks and Wildlife are investigating.

Stay with CBS as we work to bring you updates.


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