Lou Holtz was "still in a state of shock" Monday.
His good friend, pilot Dewey "Sonny" Foster, 65, died Sunday night when his plane crashed in a misty rain four miles short of a runway near Beaufort, where Holtz was waiting for him.
The South Carolina coach had flown to the Beaufort area on the King Air turboprop earlier Sunday. It crashed after refueling in Hilton Head Island, going down in a wooded, isolated part of Oak Island not far from the Lady's Island airport.
Foster died in the fiery wreck. Co-pilot Joe Baier, 77, was taken to Beaufort Medical Center for shoulder surgery.
"It was a very close call. It could have happened while we were landing," Holtz said.