Bellefonte, PA Plane Crash, Aug 1926

Famous Aviator Found Alive in Penna. Woods

Lieut. Bettis, Army Flying Ace, Missing Since Monday Is Found - Injuries serious But Not Dangerous - Owes Live to Grit - Weak from Loss of Blood.

Bellefonte, Pa., Aug. 25 (UP) - Lieut. Cyrus K. Bettis, army flying Ace, missing since Monday, was found alive in the Seven Sister Mountains today and is now in the Centre County Hospital here in a serious but not dangerous condition.

The flyer's left leg is broken below the knee; his skull is fractured in two places and he has severe lacerations on the face and head.

Owes Life to Grit.

The army officer owes his life to his grit. Buried deep in the thick forest where no one could find him or his wrecked plane, he crawled for five and a half hours through the tangled underbrush until he came to a roadway where he was later found by two state highway employes.

On Way To Michigan City.

Accompanied by two other planes Lieut. Bettis was flying from the sesquicentennial grounds, Philadelphia, to Selfridge Field in Michigan, when he ran into a fog on Mnday afternoon approximately twenty miles southeast of Bellefonte and lost his way. In searching for a landmark he crashed against the side of a mountain and fell. This was at 1:15 p. m.

Plane Catches in Tree.

In falling one wing of the plane caught in a tree and the machine wrapped itself around the trunk, breaking the force of the fall. Whether Lieutenant Bettis was rendered unconscious in striking the ground is not yet known as he is in no condition to talk. What information was obtained was given by him to the highway employes en route to the hospital.

Found on Main Highway.

Bettis was found on the main highway running from Lewistown to Bellefonte. The section of the road where he lay when picked up is under reconstruction and all traffic is detoured three or four miles away. He was discovered in the road at 8:30 a. m. by Ralph Snyder and Russell Sweetwood who were driving along in an automobile on their way to work on the road. He was lifted into the machine and rushed here.

Officer Very Weak.

The lieutenant was very weak from loss of blood and lack of food and water, and the two highway employes did not question him too much. He told them of having managed to crawl from the wreckage of his plane and for hours calling for help. He feared to leave the plane as it was a marker from the air, in the event a searching plane located the wrecked machine.

The Kingston Daily Freeman, Kingston, NY 25 Aug 1926