Tragedy strikes rural Ashland Co., homeowner ‘shocked’ at plane crash in front yard

Published: Oct. 27, 2021 at 10:47 AM CDT
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MARENGO, Wis. (KBJR) - MARENGO, WI-- Homeowner Martin Ollanketo said he was ‘in shock’ after a plane crashed in his front yard that killed two.

Ollanketo said there was a boom that shook their house.

“My wife and I were sitting in the living room. We had the tv on, probably attempting to doze off. I planned to take a pedal bike ride, and all of a sudden, we hear this boom,” Ollanketo said.

Crews on scene of Marengo plane crash in Wi
Crews on scene of Marengo plane crash in Wi(KBJR/CBS)

The plane destroyed their porch on impact, inches away from destroying their house entirely.

“It was like a bomb going off,” Ollanketo said.

As Ollanketo went outside, he saw plane parts scattered across his lawn.

He tried to save people on board but to no avail.

“When one person cut off a seatbelt, we tried to move stuff back so we could, and I couldn’t feel no pulse. So yeah, we tried to do what we could, and just from looking, we said, ‘this is bad,’” Ollanketo said.

The homeowners knew the young man and woman killed, recounting their graduation parties they attended.

“It’s bad, you know people know everybody, you know these kids, just not too long ago I was watching them, a bunch of girls climbing up the silo there. You just know them, and it’s tragic,” Ollanketo said.

Ollanketo added that he hopes to plant a memorial in his front yard to remember the young man and woman.

Crews worked all morning to disassemble the plane on Sunday.

Authorities have not released the victim’s names and said the investigation has been turned over to the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration with assistance from the Ashland County Sheriff’s Office.

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