(ABC News) When the lone engine of a small commercial plane failed, the nine people on board stayed calm as the aircraft glided toward the ocean and made a remarkably smooth belly landing, a survivor recounted Friday.

C. Phillip Hollstein Jr., a 70-year-old Kailua man, swam a half-mile in 6-foot waves to a rugged shoreline after the crash, which killed state health Director Loretta Fuddy. The others on board suffered only minor injuries.

Read all the arguments in the birth certificate controversy, in “Where’s the Birth Certificate?” and check out the special reports, banners and bumper stickers on the subject.

Hollstein said the pilot, Clyde Kawasaki, expertly maneuvered the plane after the engine failed, avoiding what could have been a catastrophic impact on the water.

“He did everything right,” Hollstein said. “He set it up for the best crash-landing you could do.”

Note: Read our discussion guidelines before commenting.