‘A true hero’: Off-duty HCPD officer injured while responding to plane crash, chief says

Updated: May. 22, 2021 at 9:44 AM EDT
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HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) - An off-duty officer with the Horry County Police Department is being called “a true hero” after responding to a deadly plane crash Friday afternoon.

HCPD Chief Joseph Hill said the officer, who was not identified, witnessed the crash on Socastee Boulevard and ran over to see how he could help.

MORE COVERAGE | 1 killed after small plane departs MYR, crashes along Socastee Blvd., investigators say

As he approached the smoking plane, an explosion knocked the officer off his feet.

He was then taken to the hospital by Horry County Fire Rescue and is now at home resting.

“This officer is a true hero,” Hill said in a statement.

The chief also complimented the actions of neighbors and other community members in the area who came asking how they could help.

“In this community, we lift each other up and we answer the call to serve our neighbors,” he said. “We are incredibly proud of our officer’s actions, our community’s response, and of all the first responders on scene, and at the dispatch center, who responded yesterday. Our officers run toward danger every day, and we remain grateful for their commitment to service and to the people of Horry County.”

Hill also extended his prayers and condolences to the family of the pilot, who was killed in the crash.

The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board are both investigating.

Stay with WMBF News for updates.

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