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South Bend neighbors remember deadly plane crash four years later

Neighbors remember deadly plane crash four years later. // WSBT 22 Photo

The day started out like any normal Sunday on Iowa St., but four years ago that St. Patrick's Day turned out to be memorable for all the wrong reasons.

"You walk outside, and you see a plane in your street," says neighbor Terrell Sutherland. "I mean, it's definitely something you wouldn't expect to happen waking up in the morning."

On March 17, 2013, a plane heading for the South Bend airport crashed into homes on Iowa Street.

"The wife was sitting in the family room in the back there, and the plane came straight at our house," says neighbor Stanley Klaybor. "At the last second it flipped over and took off half the roof at that house over there and the next two homes and landed diagonally across the street here."

Two men on the plane died, and two other passengers were injured. There were also several injuries on the ground.

Where two homes once stood, there are now two vacant lots.

The lots serve as a reminder of that day.

"Occasionally if a plane seems to come a little too close, we kind of look up," says Klaybor.

"It's definitely something I'll remember for the rest of my life. That's for sure," says Sutherland.

While the memory is there, it is fading.

Sutherland says he did not realize it was the anniversary.

"I didn't even know it was on the same day as St. Patrick's Day," says Sutherland.

Neighbors with any memory of the event are dwindling.

There are only a couple homes left with people who lived there in 2013.

However, Klaybor has lived on the street since 1955 and has no plans on moving.

"We're here to stay, and we're not that concerned," says Klaybor. "Chances of that happening again are pretty far-fetched, but who knows tonight or tomorrow?"

The two properties where the homes used to be were bought by a different neighbor. He says he just wants to make sure the properties are clean and well-kept.

It took the National Transportation Safety Board three years to investigate the crash.

They found pilot error to be the probable cause.

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