WESTERLY, R.I. (WPRI) - A pilot rescued from the waters off Rhode Island is recounting his harrowing experience to Eyewitness News, and finishing the job he was paid to do yesterday.
A day after crashing into Block Island Sound, pilot Mark Simmons was back in the air today, flying the skies above Southern New England.
Monday, Simmons took off from Westerly Airport with a banner attached to his plane that read, "Michelle, will you marry me? Love Mike"
"Probably about 10 to 15 minutes into the flight, the engine sounded rough and shut off," said Simmons.
Ethan Simmons, 8, was spending the day with his dad, and watched him take off that afternoon.
He was the only one to hear his father's mayday call for help.
"If he went missing and we never saw him again, probably, my life would be over," said Ethan.
Simmons, an experienced pilot and owner of Simmons Aviation in Westerly, managed to land his plane in the ocean.
Amazingly, he was uninjured, and stayed afloat by grabbing hold of his landing gear.
Simmon's son called for help, but before Coast Guard could reach the area, a pleasure boat named "the Stampede" picked him up.
His son now wears a hat bearing the boat's name.
We're also told the wedding proposal was a success, and the couple is going to get married.
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