Man finds iPhone that fell from plane in Texas

Ben Wilson can be forgiven for thinking his iPhone was gone for good after it fell 9,300 feet from a Beechcraft Bonanza aircraft.

But the missing phone kept on ticking, not only reporting its location but providing a map so Wilson could find it.

"It was by the side of the road south of Jacksboro, under a mesquite tree," Wilson told the Times Record News in Wichita Falls, Texas. "The donkey pointed out where it was."

The adventure all started Monday when Wilson, the owner of Gas Corp. of America, and pilot Will Warnock, were flying back from Houston. A door latch came loose on the plane, the newspaper reported, creating an opening big enough for the phone to fall out.

"The pressure popped and a newspaper flew out but I didn't see the phone go. After we got back, I looked for it on the floor (of the plane) and in my briefcase but couldn't find it," Wilson said.

Using the Find My iPhone app, Wilson and John Kidwell, Gas Corp.'s vice president of sales, learned the phone was still alive. "Later I checked the iCloud and could see it was outside of Joplin (Texas)," Kidwell said.

Armed with a satellite image and an old fashioned map, the two went looking for the phone. Getting close to the location, Wilson jumped over a fence and found himself face to face with the donkey. Nearby, he spotted the phone.

"It was in one piece, scratched a bit on the corners but it still worked," Wilson said.

  • Michael Casey

    Michael Casey covers the environment, science and technology for CBSNews.com