Miracle: 53 rescue dogs survive plane crash on Wisconsin golf course

Miracle: 53 rescue dogs survive plane crash on Wisconsin golf course

We all remember the “miracle on the Hudson,” but you can call this the miracle on the golf course: a plane carrying 3 people and 53 made a crash landing on a snowy Wisconsin golf course, but amazingly everyone on board survived.

The flight was sponsored by the Humane Animal Welfare Society, and was meant to transport the dozens of rescue dogs from New Orleans to Waukesha, Wisconsin.

These kinds of flights are done to save at-risk dogs from crowded kill shelters and transport to them to rescues with more space. According to the Washington Post, HAWS organizes two transports a month, though they’re often done by van.

But this trip took a dramatic and life-threatening turn. On Tuesday morning, the twin engine airplane began to go down above the Western Lakes Golf Club in Pewaukee, Wisconsin. Employees reportedly watched as the plane became grounded, crashed between two trees, going through a marsh and finally making land near the course’s third hole.

May be an image of airplane and outdoors
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“A couple employees working on the course that heard this plane coming down and witnessed it hitting the fifth green… In total, it skidded around a few hundred yards,” Jason Hoelz, the club’s general manager, told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

The cause of the crash is still unknown. Lake Country Fire & Rescue responded to the crash, jumping into action to save the passengers on board.

They pulled out the plan’s three human passengers, and began unloading the dozens of dogs on board — and miraculously, everyone survived.

Despite the crash being later described as a “relatively catastrophic landing,” all humans and animals made it our relatively unscathed.

HAWS Director of Organizational Development Maggie Tate-Techtmann told the Journal Sentinel that some of the dogs had minor injuries like “bumps and scrapes,” but are “doing remarkably well.”

“We are so grateful to the staff at Western Lakes Golf Club who were wonderful to work with and for the emergency response teams in Waukesha and for our team and how they responded,” she said. “Everyone pivoted so well.”

Both the causes and the ecological impact of the crash are still being investigated. But the dogs, after surviving both the shelters and a plane crash, are looking towards a bright future ahead.

HAWS set up a fundraiser for the dogs, and said that after being triaged by staff veterinarians they were all “expected to be placed up for adoption as planned in the upcoming days.”

They also started affectionately calling these dogs the “Western Lakes Loves,” after the golf course.

“It is very remarkable that all of them are doing as well as they are,” Tate-Techtmann told the Washington Post.

And the story has a very happy ending for one of the dogs… who was adopted by one of the firefighters who saved her!

According to the Post, Tony Wasielewski helped unload the dogs from the crashed plane when one of them started licking his face. It was soon evident that the dog was attached to her rescuer.

Wasielewski has two dogs at home and said he and his wife had been thinking about getting another, so it was meant to be.

“As soon as the lady opened up the door, she bypassed my wife, jumped in my arms and started giving me kisses,” Wasielewski said of the moment he adopted the dog, who is now named “CeeCee.”

But many of the other crash survivors are still looking for homes, so if you’re in the Wisconsin area you could adopt one of these precious “Western Lake Loves.”

Guess what? We are happy to announce that today you can meet 12 more of the Western Lakes Loves! That makes 19 of the 21…

Posted by Humane Animal Welfare Society – HAWS of Waukesha on Thursday, November 17, 2022

What a miracle all 53 dogs and three humans survived this scary crash. Thank you to all the responders who helped them get out safe.

We hope these dogs find their forever homes soon! Please share this incredible news!