A SIX-YEAR-OLD is recovering after surviving a plane crash in which his parents were killed.
Alcester couple Lewis and Sally Tonkinson died after a light aircraft came down near Popham Airfield in Hampshire around 3.40pm on Saturday (January 3).
The couple, who had been married just over a year, were travelling with son George who is being treated at Southampton General Hospital where he is currently conscious and recovering from his injuries.
Lewis, who had just celebrated turning 50 on New Year’s Day, had been piloting the plane and it is thought he may have been attempting an emergency landing on the grass airstrip near Basingstoke after weather conditions deteriorated when flying from the Isle of Wight to their home at Cookhill near Alcester.
Mr Lewis and his 44 year-old wife were pronounced dead at the scene, while George was found unconscious in the wreckage. He was flown by air ambulance to hospital.
Mr Tonkinson, who studied electronic engineering at the University of Warwick, was the director of his own company, Pinnacle Marketing Communications, which he set up 21 years ago with Simon Flatt.
In a statement on the company’s website Mr Flatt said: “Lewis and Sally were a hugely popular couple and their tragic and untimely loss will leave a big gap in the lives of the great many people that knew and loved them.
“We would like to thank all of those who have contacted us to express their condolences.”
Bob Pinfield, chairman of Cookhill Parish Council, said although the family had only lived in the village for a few years their tragic loss would be felt by the whole community.
He added: “On behalf of everyone in the village, the parish council extends its heartfelt sympathy to Mr and Mr Tonkinson’s family and wishes George a fast recovery in difficult circumstances.”
George’s headteacher Jim Turner, from King’s Hawford Junior School near Worcester, said he was deeply saddened.
He told The Observer: “George is a lovely boy. He is keen always to be fully involved in all of our school activities and is popular and well-liked with his year group.
“He will need the support of those close to him at this difficult time. Our thoughts and prayers are with them all. We have been informed George is conscious and making a recovery from this horrific incident. We hope he will be transferred to a hospital closer to home in the near future.”
He added the school had held a special assembly where they had all prayed for George and his family.
The Air Accident Investigation Branch will be conducting a full investigation into the crash.
Floral tributes outside the gates of the family home.