Pilot Survives Crash Into Gulf of Mexico

Walton County officials say a pilot survived a plane crash and the rough waters off the Florida Panhandle stirred up by Hurricane Katrina.

The Sheriff's Office reports that John Gray of Louisiana reported having engine problems before Sundays crash in the Gulf of Mexico, about 150 yards offshore of Miramar Beach near Sandestin.

Witnesses say they saw the plane lose an advertising banner before the accident.

Authorities say Gray was able to get out of the 1970 single-engine Blanca Scout after it hit the water, but he then had to make his way to shore in the rough surf.