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  Wife Says Husband Crashed Plane

By J.M. Hirsch
Associated Press Writer
Monday, Aug. 27, 2001; 8:17 p.m. EDT

CONCORD, N.H. –– A business executive's wife believes her husband was flying the small plane that crashed into their home, killing the pilot and reducing the home to a burned-out shell, according to court papers filed Monday.

The crash came a day after the wife obtained a restraining order against her husband, court papers also show.

Little was left of the house after Saturday's crash and fire but its foundation. It stood at the end of a winding driveway in a development of expensive homes.

Louis W. Joy III, 43, owned the home and lived there with his wife, Jo, and their 8-year-old daughter. They recently moved to Amherst from Newark, Del.

No one on the ground was injured; the wife and daughter were away when the crash occurred.

On Friday, Jo Joy sought and obtained the restraining order on Milford District Court. Judge William Drescher granted her request Monday to seal records, including an affidavit explaining why she wanted the restraining order.

"The affidavit contains information that would prove to be extremely damaging to the petitioner's daughter in light of her tender years," according to a motion filed by Mrs. Joy's lawyer, David Lauren.

Lauren added: "Louis Joy was ... the pilot of the aircraft and is thus deceased."

The wife and daughter couldn't be located for comment Monday by The Associated Press. The attorney did not return a call seeking further comment.

Neighbors said police went to the home Friday night. One, Marie Seroskie, said Monday that police escorted Louis Joy to the house to get his belongings.

The single-engine plane was registered to Joy's company, Manufacturing Excellence Inc., based in Newark, Del. He had been president since 1987 and lectured on motivation and management. The company's Web site lists Fortune 500 companies as clients.

Neighbors said the aircraft did not appear to be in trouble before the 7:40 a.m. crash.

"I kept hearing a plane going around and around," Seroskie said. "I thought he was buzzing someone. I saw him from the bedroom window and I waved at him and then the engine went completely dead."

The plane had taken off about 20 minutes earlier from Nashua Municipal Airport, 12 miles away, said Jim Peters, a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman. He said the pilot had filed an instrument flight plan with a destination of Atlantic City, N.J.

Joy's home in Delaware was bought last year by Wendy Hamme, who said neighbors considered him eccentric and a recluse. She said almost every window in the house had been nailed shut.

"Nobody knew too much about him. They all thought he was with the relocation program with the FBI or something Mafia-related. They all thought he was really strange," she said.

"He seemed like a charmer. But if he didn't get his way, he was nasty," she said.

Hamme said everything Joy installed in the house was the biggest and the best, including a garbage disposal "that could probably grind a car up."


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© Copyright 2001 The Associated Press

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