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CARTHAGE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The mother of a 23-year-old Middle Tennessee State University student said she thanks God for keeping her son safe after a he crashed his plane Wednesday afternoon.
Collin McDonald was returning from a job interview at the Lebanon airport when he crashed his small plane while landing at an airstrip on his family’s farm in Smith County.
“He was flying home and he’s landed there hundreds and hundreds of times,” his mother Lorrie McDonald said.
She continued, “The front end of the plane is practically demolished. I just thank God that He had His hand on him because almost everyone that I have talked to said that most people don’t walk away from those [kind of accidents]. So, I thank the Lord He kept His hand on him and kept him safe.”
Collin, an honors student at MTSU, was able to get out of the crashed plane and call his father before he collapsed.
“I think he was trying to get out of the plane in case there was an explosion,” his mother told News 2.
Collin was airlifted to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville where he remains hospitalized.
“I’ve gotten a lot of good reports from the doctors – very encouraging,” she said. “I can’t say enough about Vanderbilt Trauma. They have done an excellent job. They’ve kept his pain very bearable. Now, we’re waiting to hear from a plastic surgery team that will have to put his face back together.”
She added, “I feel like he’s in really good hands.”
Lorrie said her son has been a pilot since he was 16-years-old.
“He actually had his pilot’s license before he had his driver’s license.”
Collin, she said, ultimately wants to do missionary work overseas.
News 2 interviewed Collin this past May as the college student took off for a 7,000 miles flight across the United States as part of his undergraduate thesis in aerospace studies.