Plane crash victims transferred to burn unit, one upgraded to fair condition

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Photos: Gerald Clayton (left), Dennis King (right)

Both victims of Thursday’s plane crash have been transferred to the burn unit at Wishard, hospital officials said late Thursday.

Dennis King and Gerald Clayton were rushed to the Indianapolis facility after the plane crashed into a Columbus home Thursday morning.

Clayton was still in serious condition Thursday evening, but King’s condition had been upgraded to fair.

Clayton’s son told Fox 59 that his father didn’t suffer any internal injuries, although he suffered serious burns and will have to be sedated for a few days. He said Clayton–who is 81 years old–acts like he’s in his sixties.

His first words when family came to see him at the hospital were, “How is Dennis?” Family members said that’s all he was concerned about.

Family members said they’re not sure how Clayton knew King or his family. They’re not completely sure who piloted the plane.

The men who crashed were no strangers to aviation.

Both men own small planes, according to FAA records. Fox59 found this YouTube video of what appears to be King flying his own plane, a Velocity aircraft.

By all indications, Clayton was also an experienced pilot, and a volunteer for a local air museum which lists Clayton as one of its volunteer staff members.

According to the biography posted on the museum’s web site, Clayton is an Air Force veteran, and built a Glastar kit airplane which is hangared at the Columbus Municipal Airport. It’s not certain whether that was the same Glastar plane that crashed Thursday morning, but officials said that Clayton’s Glastar aircraft that crashed was indeed home built.