Dale Earnhardt Jr. Speaks Out After Surviving Scary Plane Crash with Wife and Daughter
The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is feeling grateful after he, his wife Amy Earnhardt and their young daughter, Isla Rose, survived a fiery plane crash in Tennessee last Thursday.
“Amy and I want to thank everyone who has lifted us up with phone calls, messages and prayer since last Thursday. We are truly blessed that all on board escaped with no serious injuries, including our daughter, our two pilots and our dog Gus,” he said in a statement shared on Twitter and Instagram Monday.
“With respect to the investigation, we will not be speculating or discussing the cause of the accident. I am thankful for the quick response of my pilots, local law enforcement, emergency personnel and hospital staff,” the father of one continued.
“Lastly Amy and I continue to be very appreciative of the privacy extended to us to process everything. It has been important to do that together and on our own time,” he concluded.
The crash occurred at the Elizabethton Municipal Airport in Elizabethton. “A Cessna Citation rolled off the end of Runway 24 and caught fire after landing at Elizabethton Municipal Airport in Tennessee at 3:40 p.m. today,” an FAA statement read, according to The Tennessean.
Later, Ralph Hicks, a senior investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board, said in a press conference that “the airplane basically bounced at least twice before coming down hard on the right main landing gear. The airplane continued down the runway off to the end, through a fence and it came to a stop on highway 91.”
An Elizabethton Fire Department official told PEOPLE that Amy, 37, and Dale, 44, were transported to the hospital out of an abundance of caution and without serious injuries.
Later, a rep told PEOPLE that Dale was discharged from the hospital on Friday and that “he and his family are doing well.” NBC Sports gave Dale — who serves as an analyst — the weekend off broadcasting to be with his family.
Immediately after the crash, Dale’s sister Kelley Earnhardt Miller — with whom he runs his racing business — tweeted that the three and two pilots were involved in the crash.
“Everyone is safe and has been taken to the hospital for further evaluation,” Miller wrote. “We have no further information at this time. Thank you for your understanding.”
Later, Miller shared another message, writing, “Finally laying down for the night and want to say thank you to God, the angels among us, our pilots, first responders, medical staff, our NASCAR family and everyone that has reached out in whatever way to support us all.”
On Friday, the NTSB said a preliminary investigation report will be released in around seven days.