A love-sick pilot who buzzed his ex-girlfriend's neighborhood for nearly two hours was over-whelmed with emotion but low on fuel - and crashed into her living room when the plane's tank ran dry.
"I told him he wasn't welcome in my home," said the woman's father as he surveyed a living room filled with shattered glass and bits of aluminum fuselage on Wednesday. "I guess this is how he got in."The woman, Donna Lorenz, and her parents fled the house before the crash, which left pilot Randy Mock with serious skull fractures and facial injuries.
Police evacuated about 100 people to a shopping mall parking lot as Mock, 30, swooped and dipped a Cessna two-seater in the predawn flight. He stalled the plane several times and clipped the top branches of a tree.
A witness, Don Rudko, said Mock casually flicked a cigarette butt out his window a few seconds before crashing.
"I could see the red spark as he tossed it out," said Rudko. "I thought this guy must be Cool Hand Luke. Here he's going to kill himself and he flicks a cigarette out the window."
"Every time it came by, I'd drive to a different part of the lot to get out of its way. It was unreal, like a dream, only it was real," said Yolande Rovere, a resident.
Police negotiators went to the control tower of the municipal airport to try to talk Mock down. He demanded to speak to Lorenz, who refused.
"I'm almost out of gas, man," he told police, who recorded part of the communication. "You know nobody takes me seriously. There's a lot of people asleep down there and it'd be a disaster if I ran out of gas where I am now."
His engine sputtered, then stalled and he glided neatly into the home's living-room window.
"It was one of those love things," said Lorenz's brother.
Mock made headlines in 1988 when he was granted a temporary injunction preventing another woman, an 18-year-old former girlfriend, from having an abortion. He argued he and the woman had agreed to have a family and said he wanted to raise the child.
A judge refused to extend the 48-hour injunction and the woman went ahead with the abortion.
In June, Mock was laid off as an aircraft refueler at Edmonton's International Airport.