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Stunt Plane Crash Injures Pilot

April 12, 1988

LAKELAND, Fla. (AP) _ The pilot of a home-built biplane was in stable condition Monday, recovering from injuries he suffered when his aircraft made a crash-landing before an estimated 45,000 people at an aerobatic show.

The Sun ’N Fun Fly-in accident left Ron Cox, 32, of Mountain Grove, Mo., with chipped vertebrae, bruises and abrasions. He was hospitalized at Lakeland Regional Medical Center.

Cox and another pilot were performing stunts in tandem Sunday when the $40,000 biplane Cox spent 13 months building caught fire at about 1,000 feet. The California man said he blacked out on landing.

″It was just a hard landing,″ Cox said, adding he wasn’t sure what caught fire on the plane.

Rescue workers removed Cox from the cockpit after the crash, Polk County Sheriff’s Capt. Tommy Holcom said.

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