richierich
Posts: 3282
Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2000 5:49 am

Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 8:44 am

I am not trying to offend anyone by asking this and hope that all people in here have the common decency to leave airliner crash sites the way they find them out of respect to those that may have died.

What I would like to know is who in here has visited an airliner crash site and what did they find (if anything)? 9/11 does not count - hundreds of thousands of people have been to that tragic crash site.

I was reading an old Airliners magazine which spoke about visiting a crash site somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. I think it was the first DC-9 crash or something, and about 20 people died. The remains of the crashed plane were still there, some 30 years on.

Are there a lot of people that do this? It is sort of interesting and also sort of sick and morbid. I don't think I would ever do it though. The closest major crash site to me would probably be the AA 300 crash in Queens in 2001. I have never had a reason to be in the Rockaways and doubt I'd go out of my way to see the crash site.
None shall pass!!!!
 
ushermittwoch
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 8:49 am

Haven't ever done that and I also don't feel the need to do that.
I guess if I knew somebody that got killed at the crash site I would go but not just like that.
Where have all the tri-jets gone...
 
JFKviaPHX
Posts: 188
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2004 1:31 am

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 9:02 am

They are rebuilding on the 587 crash sites now. For me it's only a few blocks away. As for going to any other sites. I wouldn't go out of my way to visit any.
 
UAL Bagsmasher
Posts: 1839
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 9:43 am

I have been to several:



UAL 533 @ MDW (B737-222)
UAL 585 @ COS (B737-291)
Southern 242 @ New Hope GA (DC-9)
Eagle 4184 in Roselawn IN (ATR-72)
Allegheny 853 in London IN (DC-9)

Most of the sites have been rebuilt. One exception is the site in London, IN. It is still a bean farm. I was there just over a year ago. In about 2 hours of looking, I ended up finding quite a few pieces of the DC-9. I was able to identify several of them after cleaning them up.
 
UAL Bagsmasher
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 9:47 am

One thing I forget to add. The London Indiana crash (midair collision) occured way back in 1969. Amazing how the stuff is still there.
 
vikkyvik
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash S

Thu Mar 04, 2004 9:53 am

Only been to one crash site. Visited the crash site of Indian Airlines IC605 which crashed in Feb. 1990. Only visited it though cause I was on that damn flight. As a testament to the security around the site, one of my relatives who visited the site walked away with a 6-inch piece of the plane, which my family now has. In retrospect, yes, that person should not have taken it; but there was also really no doubt as to the cause of the crash. I would never take anything from a crash site; but I guess for my family it's a reminder of that experience.
~Vik
I'm watching Jeopardy. The category is worst Madonna songs. "This one from 1987 is terrible".
 
ltbewr
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 1:25 pm

While I have not been on the ground of an airplane/airliner crash site, I have been close to site of 2 small airplane crash sites shortly after they crashed, and through and around Lockerbie, Scotland, a number of years (1993?) after PA 103 crashed. The small planes were 1 in Elmwood Park, NJ into an industrial building and the second was a single engine a/c that crashed at take off into the northern boundary fence of and a then existing sign at Teterboro, NJ airport, both in the last 5 years.
As to PA103, I was on vacation a number of years after that terrible tragedy and driving near to and made a deliberate decision to drive through and around Lockerbie on a quiet Sunday morning. Out of respect, I didn't stop, didn't get out of my car, but did drive slowly around and just outside of town including the area I believe was where the nose of that a/c ended up, and the section of center of the town where rebuilt buildings on the site where the center part of the fusulage landed. I recall that the place where the nose landed, there is a cemetary, with apparently mountments as to the PA 103 crash. I do not consider it morbid to see such sites, or where has been a major car crash had recently took place at, so long as show some respect.
 
Spike
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 1:31 pm

I had to drive past Lockerbie three days after PA103 crashed on my way home from holiday. It was so eerie that none of us said anything in the car for the next two hours.
 
flyboy36y
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 2:03 pm

Other than 9/11 I've been to 3.
 
User avatar
QB737
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 2:38 pm

My Dad use to take me near the TCA 831 in Ste Thérèse, as it was very close to my grand-parents house. A Trans Canada Airlines (old name of AC) DC-8 crashed there in 1963 after taking of out of YUL on it's way to YYZ. No one survived.


Benoît.

[Edited 2004-03-04 06:39:44]
Ben YVR
 
TriStar500
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 7:49 pm

I have been to one crash site by accident - sorry for the pun.

During one of my visits to Paris, I took the Roissybus from CDG to downtown. The usual route takes the bus straight across the highway and the Peripherique to the city center, but due to traffic congestions, the driver chose to drive across the countryside this time.

A few minutes later we passed a city sign with "La Gonesse" on it... and suddenly, while looking at the hotel building to my right, I realized that we were just passing the Concorde crash site - if you have seen those terrible and tragic pictures of the wreckage in front of the hotel, you will certainly remember for the rest of your life what this building looks like!

At this time, about two years later (summer of 2002), there was no visible evidence of that horrible tragedy left - the grass had grown back and the damages to the hotel were repaired.

Still, it gave me chill to see this site and remember the 100 or so poor souls who had perished here. I don't think that any of the other bus occupants realized what they were looking at.
Homer: Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
 
canoecarrier
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 8:12 pm

Having known more than a few people that have perished in aircraft accidents, I don't go out of my way to visit crash sites (other than the WTC site). If anyone has ever been around aircraft wreckage, it is a very depressing sight, I doubt you would go out of your way to gawk. Once when I was in college, I remember there was a RC airplane show at the airport I was a fueler, a PA180 flew in with two people, they waited around 2 hours for their friend to fly in. Later, while they were still there, the FAA called and told me what had happened, then asked me to pass this on to the people waiting for their friend, I said, "I don't make enough to tell anyone that". The guy had hit some power lines over the MO river and crashed upside down, 2 days later when they recovered the wreckage, they put it in our maint. hanger. No I won't go visit a crash site.
The beatings will continue until morale improves
 
RareBear
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 10:57 pm

As a Civil Air Patrol member for more than 20 years, I have been to a number of small aircraft crash sites. Most of these sites I first saw from the air, and then went back to look at on the ground. I wouldn't call it morbid, but I have an interest in aircraft archaeology, and it helps me learn to identify crash sites.
Illegitimus non carborundum
 
BMAbound
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 11:06 pm

I am going to move to a crash site... In 1977, a Vickers Viscount got iced up on approach to BMA. It was impossible to keep it in the air and the pilots had to put it down in a very congested area. It happens to be within a very short distance to where I will move. I don't know if there were any survivors, but many died. Out of curiosity, I might go visit the site and see if there's anything there, such as a small monument or so.

johan
Altitude is Insurance - Get Insured
 
JBirdAV8r
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 11:17 pm

A few major airline ones.

Back in the 60's a United Airlines Viscount crashed in my great uncle's field in east TN after catching fire midair, killing everyone aboard. Just a few years back, I discovered an old piece of engine cowl from that accident.

Also been to the crash site of USAir 1016, because that one is pretty close to me (emotionally, not physically). Though I didn't find any pieces, the area was still pretty visible a few years ago. The road is still pretty torn up where it slid across, and there's a definite clearing in the trees where the aircraft hit the home and came to rest. Right across the street at the site of the first impact stands a memorial. It's eerie to say the least.
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
electraBob
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 11:29 pm

Anyone who drives on Middlebelt Road under I-94 just Northeast of Detroit Metro Airport is at the site of a horrible air disaster. That is where Northwest flight 255 crashed on Aug. 16, 1987. I have drivin through that intersection many times and each time I think about that awful night.

I actually did try to see the wreckage of a crash one time. In Jan. 1983, a United DC-8 freighter crashed shortly after takeoff from DTW. I drove along Wayne Rd. on the West side of the airport, but the actual crash site was too far away...never did see it.

Having a smoking section in a restaurant is like having a peeing section in a swimming pool.....
 
Dtw757
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 11:41 pm

I don't think it's morbid at all to want to see these sites. Same as visiting a battlefield. You can pay your respects to the victims lost.

I too was going to mention the crash site at DTW. I also think about it when I'm driving on 94 or Middlebelt. I was picking someone up 2 nights before that crash and a NW MD-80 was landing at the same time we were driving out.

I pass the site of a Burlington Air Express DC8 crash often as it's across the street from my parents farm here at TOL. I was living at home at the time of the crash and experienced it first hand. Four people lost their lives in that crash. Now the field continues to produce sweet corn and potatoes like nothing ever happened.

721,2,732,3,4,5,G,8,9,741,2,3,4,752,3,762,3,4,772,3,788,D93,5,M80,D10,M11,L10,100,AB6,319,20,21,332,3,346,388,146,CR2,7,
 
jsnww81
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 04, 2004 11:52 pm

I've been to the United 533 (the 737 that crashed on approach to MDW in 1972) site. It struck a block of houses on 70th Place about two miles southeast of the airport.

The houses have rebuilt in their original style, and except for the smaller trees you would never know that a jetliner had crashed on the street. There's still a vacant lot on the crash site (it was there before the crash) that I think would be a fitting place for a memorial. However, there's no marker or plaque indicating that a crash took place.

Even more amazingly, many of the residents who survived the crash (two residents were killed as the plane struck their house) still live on the block - including the woman whose mother and sister were killed.

I've also been to the American 191 crash site in Elk Grove Village, just northwest of O'Hare International Airport. The DC10 crashed onto the Ravenswood Airfield (an abandoned former GA field that was closed when ORD was opened) and partially on the Oasis Mobile Home Park, again killing two people on the ground.

The airfield has long since been reclaimed by grass and shrubs, and the crash site is now very scrubby and overgrown. It's used by the Chicago Police Department for canine training. Again, as with the United 533 site, there is no memorial, although for the worst single-plane crash in US history I feel there should be one.

The amazing thing about the AA191 site is that about a quarter-mile away is an Amoco gasoline storage facility with about ten large storage tanks. If the DC10 had flown just a little bit further, it would have struck those tanks and the fire would have been much, much more fierce.
 
corey07850
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 12:12 am

I've been to the crash site of the USAir DC-9 that crashed in Charlotte during landing due to windshear. The aircraft crashed into a small forest between the airport and the airport boundary fence/access road, and I'll never forget seeing the huge void in the trees the plane caused. Others that have seen this will know exactly what I'm talking about
 
BHMNONREV
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Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2003 9:17 am

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 12:52 am

On July 23, 1973 an Ozark Airlines FH-227 crashed during a thunderstorm a few miles short of the runway at STL. 37 people died in the accident. The following day, my cousin and I rode our bikes to the crash site (on the UMSL campus) but were not able to get very close, the police had a wide cordon around the area. We were able to see some of the wreckage in an open field, mainly some seats and parts of the fuselage.

I think the title of this topic is right on, i.e. morbid curiosity. I think what drew me to the crash site was not expecting to see human remains scattered everywhere, but to see where a large loss of life occurred. But I was only 13 at the time, so who knows.

The most vivid memory I have of that day is the smell of aviation fuel....
 
tano
Posts: 54
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 12:53 am

I just come from the Andes. Do you remember the "Alive!" movie?
Well, the story is real, and the place is magnificent.
A glacier at 13.500 Ft. in the middle of the mountains.
A tomb is there, where many people are buried. A cross is on it (the majority of the FH-227 passengers were members, relatives and friends of an Uruguayan Christian rugby team). There´s also part of the wing and many other pieces.
With great respect to all those involved in that story, by visiting that place you can barely imagine what these people went thru for 46 days. Be a believer in God or not, the place is sacred.
 
Type-Rated
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:03 am

An interesting note about the Ozark FH-227 crash was that a dog that was being carried in a kennel survived that crash, it was thrown clear upon impact.
I have also heard that Tell City, IN has a memorial put up on the site where a NW Electra went in back in the 60's. It's just an open field with a marker with the names of the passengers. Has anyone been to it?
Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!
 
Coronado990
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:03 am

I lived one half mile from the PSA 727-200 crash site in San Diego near Nile & Dwight streets. It crashed on the street I always rode my bike on to get to high school and I was able to approach the wreckage 5 minutes after the mid-air collision. I drive by it quite a lot and thought I got use to it but recently, I was looking for houses to rent and one became available across the street from the crash site. During inspection of the house, I looked out the kitchen window and it struck me that I just could not live there.
Uncle SAN at your service!
 
DutchFlyer
Posts: 159
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:09 am

It's sick visiting those places when no relatives or friends are involved. What are people hoping for. To see the remains of those who died. Just looking for sensation, sickening. I guess it's the same why people are braking with their cars at accidents causing a traffic jam.

Going to those places long after the wreckage is removed is another issue.
 
ushermittwoch
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Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2004 10:18 pm

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:11 am

Opposed to my first statement, I have actually been to a site of a plane crash. It was a USAF plane though. It crashed into a house in Remscheid, Germany in 1988. My friend lived about five blocks down the road. You couldn't get to the soccer pitch w/o passing it.
Where have all the tri-jets gone...
 
767-322ETOPS
Posts: 319
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:22 am

I've seen many times the sight where a UA DC-8 went down in Park Slope, Brooklyn (Sterling Place and Seventh Avenue) - after a midair with a TWA Connie.
 
Tom in NO
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:29 am

Been to a couple, one of them local:

Pan Am 759 Boeing 727, 7/9/82, Kenner, LA (some residential site rebuilt, others still vacant)
Eastern 212 DC-9, 7/11/74, Charlotte, NC (wooded area)
Delta 191 L-1011, 8/2/85, DFW (on airport property)

Tom at MSY
"The criminal ineptitude makes you furious"-Bruce Springsteen, after seeing firsthand the damage from Hurricane Katrina
 
SlamClick
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:38 am

A visit to a crash site, like a visit to a battlefield or a cemetary, is not inherently morbid. It depends on the reason for your doing so.

I have visited cemetaries where I have no loved ones buried. This includes Arlington, Montparnasse, "Boot Hill" in some western ghost towns and pioneer family plots in the woods of Kentucky. I have visited Gettysburg, Shiloh, and other battlefields. I have visited ground zero and the scene of the Boston Massacre. I don't think my interest was "morbid" but a historic curiosity accompanied by respect for those dead there and their surviving families.

I have visited crash sites in the same spirit. I do not go there to find "souvenirs" to carry home. I wish that people would stop doing that because they invariably just throw the object out in a year or two. At one airliner crash site in Kentucky, the wreckage was buried on the scene. It is a local "hobby" to dig in the mound. But I also found pioneer graves nearby that had been dug open. Grave robbers are universally held in contempt. It is a low crime.

Crash sites are, in one way of thinking, part of the historical record of a place or of aviation itself. I believe that they might be visited in the same spirit that one might visit a cemetary or a battlefield. If you do visit a crash site where there is still wreckage present, please do not carry anything away. I know of several descendants of people killed in WW II era crashes who found the place where their father or brother died, only by recording a serial number on a part and tracking that down. It is a historic site, it is a grave. Please treat it properly.




Happiness is not seeing another trite Ste. Maarten photo all week long.
 
richierich
Posts: 3282
Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2000 5:49 am

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:07 am

Very interesting responses... I agree with the last sentiment to treat crash sites with a sense of respect to those that died.

None shall pass!!!!
 
prosa
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:22 am

Only once did I visit a crash site. It was maybe 15 years ago, as best as I can recall. A private airplane had gone off the end of a runway at BDR and caught fire, and two or three people died (one survived). I was in the area day or two later and decided to drive by. The police had the road cordoned off and all I could see, from several hundred feet away, was a tarp covering what must have been some wreckage.
"Let me think about it" = the coward's way of saying "no"
 
b741
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 12:24 pm

I was driving the Trans-Canada Highway 10 years ago and by the Dryden, Ontario airport could see a clearing in the trees where a F-27 went down in 1989. "The Dryden Disaster". There is a street address in my district where a Beech 18 went down in 72' but I won't go.
Being Bilingual, I Speak English And Aviation
 
KKMolokai
Posts: 741
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RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 12:45 pm

I've been to two crash sites.

Aloha's (AQ) #243, in which the forward section of the 737 cabin was blown out during mid-flight, while en-route from the Big Island to O'ahu. The aircraft made a "miracle landing" on Maui. The one death in the accident was that of C.B. Lansing, the head flight attendant on board. As a kid, she let me play in the galley, stacking pineapple juice cans. (My father recently retired from AQ).

Aloha Island Air's (now "Island Air," Aloha's commuter carrier) Twin Otter flight between Maui-Moloka'i, in which the flight crew misjudged their altitude (their radars were turned off), and in the black of the night, slammed head on into the Molokai cliff-side at full throttle. The severity of the impact, resulted in dental records, as the only positive means of identification for those on-board. The flight was filled with the Molokai High School woman's basketball team, returning from an off-island basketball tournament.
We are the people of American Airlines. And we know why you fly.
 
prosa
Posts: 5389
Joined: Sat Oct 27, 2001 3:24 am

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:33 pm

I've been to two crash sites.
Aloha's (AQ) #243, in which the forward section of the 737 cabin was blown out during mid-flight, while en-route from the Big Island to O'ahu. The aircraft made a "miracle landing" on Maui. The one death in the accident was that of C.B. Lansing, the head flight attendant on board. As a kid, she let me play in the galley, stacking pineapple juice cans. (My father recently retired from AQ).


I'm a bit confused ... wouldn't the site be OGG?
"Let me think about it" = the coward's way of saying "no"
 
KKMolokai
Posts: 741
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2000 2:06 am

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:38 pm

"I'm a bit confused ... wouldn't the site be OGG?"

Yes, OGG is Maui. That's where the flight made the emergency landing.
We are the people of American Airlines. And we know why you fly.
 
Hardkor
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Aug 21, 2001 1:51 pm

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:39 pm

My uncle was on the Fokker in the Dryden crash, however he was able to survive. I've visited the Swissair memorial twice, and it's eerie to look out in the ocean and picturing a plane going down there. the memorial itself is simple but repsectful.
Hardkor
 
CWUPilot
Posts: 122
Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2004 7:49 am

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 1:41 pm

When I was 5 or so a Beech Bonanza crashed in the street behind my house. It was a little traumatic to say the least. I visited the site with my dad. The pilot and passengers suffered serious injuries. The crash was due to engine failure and the gear did not deploy. Despite how close I was to an aviation accident, I still became a pilot  Smile.
"The worst day of flying still beats the best day of real work."
 
concord977
Posts: 1224
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2004 1:43 pm

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 2:56 pm

I have visited two sites: a Lockheed Electra that crashed in Tell City, Indiana and an Allegheny DC-9 that crashed in Shelbyville, Indiana.

The Electra site now has a memorial at the point of impact. I visited the DC-9 site about 5 days after the crash, when all human remains were believed to be recovered.

There is a guy in Las Vegas who is really into this in a big way. He has done books and videos on the subject of "Aviation Archeology". His name is Doug Scroggins, and he can be reached via his website at:



- Curt

No info
 
concord977
Posts: 1224
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2004 1:43 pm

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 2:57 pm

The website didn't come through on the last message. Here it is:

www.lostbirds.org
No info
 
StevenUhl777
Posts: 3281
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2001 11:02 am

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Fri Mar 05, 2004 3:07 pm

I also was at the WTC, a month after 9/11. 11:30pm at night..very creepy, and it was still on fire and very eerie.

I would like to the see the UA93 site in Shanksville, PA...just to pay tribute to those heros of that day, all 40 of the passengers. (Total was 44, but of course I don't count the cowards). In addition, there's a plaque to those lost on AA77 at the Pentagon.

Others would be UA232 in Sioux City, and the UA DC-8 crash near PDX that occured in late Dec. 1978.

And the winner for best actress is....REESE WITHERSPOON for 'Walk the Line'!!!!!!!!
 
jhooper
Posts: 5560
Joined: Thu Dec 13, 2001 8:27 pm

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash Sites

Thu Mar 11, 2004 3:22 am

I am also in the Civil Air Patrol. A few months ago, I was asked to participate in a search of the T-34 that went down north of Houston.
Last year 1,944 New Yorkers saw something and said something.
 
KYIPpilot
Posts: 1357
Joined: Fri Oct 24, 2003 11:14 pm

RE: Morbid Fascination - Visiting Airliner Crash S

Thu Mar 11, 2004 4:14 am

I too have been to the crash site of NW 255. It still looks the same as when the crash occured. I know a guy who at the time was a Dearborn police officer, and was called in that night and the next day to help remove the bodies. He said it still bothers him when he smells jet fuel now, because there was fuel everywhere.
"It starts when you're always afraid; You step out of line, the man come and take you away" -Buffalo Springfield