Waynn Sheldon Wood attempted to save Joseph M. Tomko from an impending explosion, Geneva, Ohio, September 3, 1972. When the private airplane in which Tomko, 29, and another man were riding crashed in an upright position in a field, both men were injured and unable to get out. Among those attracted was Wood, 33, painter, who ran to the side of the plane where Tomko was still fastened in his seat just inside the open doorway. He was only semiconscious. Moving under the tilted wing of the damaged aircraft, Wood went to the doorway, reached into the cockpit, and started to release Tomko’s seat belt. The fuel tank in the wing then exploded and sent flames in all directions. Wood sustained burns and was hurled away from the plane, which became engulfed by flames. Tomko and the other man died. Wood was hospitalized and recovered from his burns.
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