Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2001

One killed, two rescued after plane crash

ANCHORAGE -- A Canadian search and rescue crew worked Saturday to recover the body of a pilot killed when his plane crashed on a glacier in Kluane National Park, while the two mountaineers who survived the crash were recovering from their injuries at an Anchorage hospital.

The pilot, identified as Kurt Gloyer, 45, of Yakutat was picking up two climbers from the Cathedral Glacier Thursday evening when the ski-equipped Cessna 185 he was flying apparently caught the edge of a hidden crevasse on takeoff. The plane plunged into the 80-foot-deep crevasse, landing on its back.

"We just whammed down there," said William Pilling, 43, one of the two survivors. Pilling, of Bishop, Calif. suffered cuts to his head and a broken collar bone. His climbing partner, Andy Selters, 43, of Tom's Place, Calif. had four broken vertebrae.

"I think we both feel we got off very lightly in this," Pilling said by phone from his hospital bed at Providence Alaska Medical Center.

The crash came after a grueling 16-day trek and climb during which the two men were pinned down by a storm for six days and running low on food and fuel.

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