Woman Who Survived Riverside Plane Crash Loses Battle For Life

SAN JOSE (CBS SF) – A San Jose woman who was badly burned in a private plane crash that claimed the lives of her mother, stepfather and family friend has died of her injuries, according to a posting on a Gofundme page set up by the family.

Sheryll Van Gelder, who maintained the Gofundme page for the family, Wednesday posted:

“God needed another angel. Stacey Joanne Pierce is now at peace with her parents. Her injuries were severe and nothing but a miracle could’ve saved her. Please pray for her family.”

Her husband, Richard Pierce, had kept a constant vigil at her bedside since she was pulled from the flaming wreckage of a plane crash in Riverside.

It has been week since firefighters pulled Stacey Pierce through a bedroom window after she was ejected from a private plane carrying and her parents and two other family friends that crash into a Riverside neighborhood shortly after takeoff.

The group was returning to San Jose from watching Pierce’s daughter, Brooke, take part in a cheerleading competition.

She suffered third-degree burns over 90 percent of her body and underwent surgery. Both her legs were amputated and she never regained the ability to talk.

Her mother, 67-year-old Dana Hijazi, was killed along with her stepfather 83-year-old Nouri Hijazi and family friend 22-year-old Adine Ferales.

Another family friend – Adine’s mother Sylvia Ferales — was found on the lawn near the wreckage. Neighbors helped firefighters to pull her across the street, away from the burning homes. She was being treated for possible airway burns.

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While a cause of the crash had yet to be determined, the 43-year-old plane registered to Nouri Hijazi took off in poor weather.

Richard Pierce had talked with his wife before take-off and begged her to take a commercial flight.

“All day I told my wife, ‘Please take a commercial flight home,’” he said. “And she said, ‘No we’ll be fine.’”

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