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53 Miracle Puppy Dogs

53 miracle puppy dogs survive a plane crash. Now you can adopt them.

53 miracle puppy dogs survive a plane crash. Now you can adopt them.

Tony Wasielewski pulled crate after crate from the wreckage of a plane that was supposed to carry 53 rescue dogs from New Orleans to Waukesha, Wis., on Tuesday morning. Instead, it crash-landed on a snow-covered golf course just outside of Milwaukee.

As the deputy fire chief went to grab yet another crate, one of the rescues — roaming the fuselage after freeing herself during the crash — leaped into his arms and slathered him with kisses.

Wasielewski, 47, didn’t know it yet, but less than 48 hours after leaving the crash site, he would welcome that dog into his family.

It all started around 9 a.m. Tuesday when several employees at the Western Lakes Golf Club in Pewaukee, Wis., watched a twin engine turboprop airplane crash onto the green of the fifth hole, Jason Hoelz, the club’s general manager, told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The plane then shot through some trees — snapping off the wings — before plowing through a marsh, skidding across the second hole fairway and ramming into a tree on hole No. 3, where it came to rest.

“This was a relatively catastrophic landing,” Matthew Haerter, assistant chief at Lake Country Fire and Rescue, said Tuesday at a news conference, just hours after it happened.

Everyone and every dog aboard the plane survived, although all three of the people and some of the pups suffered minor injuries. About 300 gallons of jet fuel spilled onto the golf course and into a marsh, triggering cleanup efforts from the state Department of Natural Resources, Haerter said.

For now, it’s unclear what caused the crash. The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are investigating.

Upon collision, golf course employees rushed to the wreckage, pulling the pilot, co-pilot and another person from the plane before offloading the dog crates. When firefighters arrived, the employees used golf carts to ferry them to the crash site.

53 miracle puppy dogs survive a plane crash.

Tony Wasielewski and his wife, Becky, with Marley, left, the dog Wasielewski saved from the wreckage of a plane that crash-landed Tuesday on a golf course in Pewaukee, Wis. Wasielewski, a deputy fire chief, adopted Marley a day after the crash, welcoming her to join the two dogs his family already owns. (Courtesy of Humane Animal Welfare Society)


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