Knight continues to recover

Published 10:43 am Thursday, August 31, 2017

The pilot of a small single-engine fixed-wing plane that crashed in the 100 block of Mountain View Lane off of Rock Mill Road near Enonville in Buckingham County on July 4 is in the process of getting back to business.

Justin Knight

According to Matthew Chudoba, a senior associate of ICR Capital that works on investor relations with Apple Hospitality REIT, Justin G. Knight, of Midlothian, who serves as president and chief executive officer of Apple Hospitality REIT, suffered serious injuries in the crash.

Chudoba said Knight is recovering well and recently used an earnings call with the company as an opportunity to let many who have reached out to him know that he’s doing well and appreciates all the support he’s received.

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“(Knight) is making great strides towards his full recovery and maintains an active dialogue with the Apple Hospitality team and others that he would normally interact with that are part of the company’s business,” Chudoba said. “Krissy Gathright, executive vice president and chief operating officer, and Bryan Peery, executive vice president and chief financial officer, continue to share in the responsibilities and oversight of Apple Hospitality’s on-site day-to-day activities.”

Chudoba said with the support of an “extremely” experienced team at Apple Hospitality, the company continues with ordinary business activities.

“At this time, Justin’s primary focus is on his family and recovery and remaining actively engaged with his colleagues at Apple Hospitality REIT,” Chudoba said.

According to Virginia State Police Trooper Rick Chambliss, who was on scene with volunteer firefighters, sheriff’s deputies and rescue personnel, the occupants of the aircraft were Knight and his son, Brenton Knight. Brenton only suffered minor injuries in the crash, which occurred in a cornfield near a residence.

“The pilot was flown to U.Va. Hospital for treatment of life-threatening injuries,” Virginia State Police spokeswoman Corinne Geller said, referring to Justin.

“An Aviat A-1C-180 aircraft stalled out causing it to crash land in a cornfield in the 100 block of Mountain View Lane,” Geller said. “The plane had taken off from a private landing strip on Alcoma Road in Buckingham County and was flying locally when the crash occurred.”

“The FAA and NTSB have both been notified. The crash remains under investigation at this time,” Geller said at the time.

“He made a couple approaches,” said Mike Palmore during a previous interview. Palmore lives in the Enonville area and witnessed the place go down. “He slowed down real slow (and) came in real slow … He made a couple approaches and slowed way down.”

Palmore said the plane “went back around and came around the third time,” flying very low. “I looked and I saw he had his full flaps down … and then I heard him touch down and he throttled back up, because I guess he saw where he wasn’t going to make it.”