[7], About three months before the crash, Wichita State contracted Golden Eagle Aviation to supply a Douglas DC-6B, to fly the team to away games for the 1970 season. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,... Tramel: How 1970 Wichita State football plane crash survivors are making sure their teammates aren't forgotten, OU football: Sooners headed to Cotton Bowl to play Florida, Congress seals agreement on COVID relief, government funding. “We Are Marshall.” Marshall football rebounded and has thrived. “They are still greatly missed to this day. Of the 40 on board, 31 died. Of the 40 on board, 31 died either in the crash or as a result of injuries sustained in it. (John Putt) On the 2nd of October 1970, a chartered airliner carrying the Wichita State University football team took a detour to give the young players a close-up view of the Rocky Mountains. The “Gold” plane was carrying many of the team’s starters, Head Coach Ben Wilson, athletic director Bert Katzenmeyer, and additional personnel. Only eight players and the co-pilot survived the crash. Lewis’ seat belt was off. The hike along an unmarked (but easy to find) trail is about a mile and the area is still densely littered with twisted metal. One of the deceased passengers was an off-duty flight attendant who was assisting. Featherstone’s family eventually moved into the country, and he spent his final two seasons of high school at Edmond Memorial. [11] First to arrive at the crash scene were construction workers from the nearby Eisenhower Tunnel project and motorists on U.S. 6 (I-70). Lewis was on the gold plane. Christian sat two rows ahead of Lewis. They never arrived. Sports editor for The Sunflower, Sean Marty, observes the 1970 Wichita State plane crash site on Sunday, Sept. 27 near Silver Plume, Colorado. Every year on October 2 at 9 a.m., a wreath is placed at this memorial.[5]. Less scenic, this route allowed more time to gain altitude for the climb over the Rocky Mountains. “Yesterday, you wrote an article on the Wichita State plane crash that killed 31 people. • Randy Kiesau, defensive back, Clinton High School. The Wichita State plane crash is often forgotten and overshadowed because of a similar accident that happened just 43 days later. Section of wing with landing gear still visible. I got up to go to the cockpit, which wasn't unusual to do, and I could tell we were in trouble, looking out the window and seeing nothing but green in front of us. When the plane entered the canyon, and the Rocky Mountains suddenly loomed near, and the pilot started banking, desperately trying to buy time, Christian looked back at Lewis. "[4] Although occupying the left seat, he was acting in the capacity of a First Officer because he did not have a type rating on the Martin 4-0-4. Wichita State University Football Team Plane Crashes in Clear Creek Canyon. Wichita State Plane Wreck. 50 Years After the Wichita State Crash . Read more ›. But according to the NTSB, the accident could have easily been prevented if … Mary Lynne dropped out of college to help care for her siblings in Hesston. They noticed a phone. Years later, Lewis would learn that teammate Mike Bruce, another survivor, pushed him through a hole to exit the hell of the crash. [6] The four-engined DC-6 was a large, powerful aircraft that could accommodate the entire team. Not only were they just great young men, friendly to everyone, and amazing athletes, they also were too young to die while they had so much to offer.”. Could have been on Rusty Featherstone’s list. Wichita Eagle and Beacon - Crash 1970. Log in or subscribe to read and leave comments. “He was a chick magnet. Raymond and Yvonne King left behind seven children, ranging in ages from 18 to 4. 31 out of the 40 people on board were killed. Pilot errors, including poor in-flight decisions and inadequate pre-flight planning, were officially reported as leading to the crash. Wichita State Plane Wreck is a 1.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Silver Plume, Colorado that features a great forest setting and is rated as moderate. Black & Gold: Remembering The WSU Plane Crash video by KPTS. [5] Wichita State University officials and family members of the survivors were flown to Denver on an aircraft made available by Robert Docking, the Governor of Kansas. Lutz, B. 50 years ago, WSU’s football team was flying through the Dry Gulch when the plane crashed into the side of a mountain on Oct. 2, 1970. And Featherstone specifically wants Oklahomans to remember four of the 31: Four Oklahomans among the 31 aboard an airplane that entered a Colorado canyon and never came out. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and nature trips. The s… [5], Classes at Wichita State were canceled for Monday, October 5, and a memorial service was held that evening on campus at Cessna Stadium. For 50 years, those Shockers have assembled in October to commemorate the lives lost. PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. One person was injured when a small plane crashed after taking off from a South Florida airport — the third crash the facility has seen in the last month, officials said. It’s here a plane carrying the Wichita State football team crashed while traveling to a game at Utah State on Oct. 2, 1970. “I stayed where I was,” Featherstone said. So Lewis called his mother at work back in Duncan. [9], The President of Golden Eagle Aviation, Ronald G. Skipper (1936–2003),[10] was the pilot flying "Gold. The Shockers traveled in two planes. • Tom Shedden, offensive tackle, Putnam City High School. He was a defensive end from Duncan and had NFL aspirations. [7] During the flight to Denver he visited passengers in the cabin, advising them that after refueling they would take a scenic route, near Loveland Ski Area and Mount Sniktau, the proposed alpine skiing venues for the 1976 Winter Olympics, recently awarded to Denver in May. [19] A trail to the wreck site via Dry Gulch is 0.4 miles past the memorial off exit 216. 3-1127, "Wichita State recalls a crash that killed 31", "Crash survivor remembers Wichita State's saddest day", "Sightseeing is blamed in fatal plane crash", "Forgotten tragedy: Survivors' quest to keep memories of 1970 Wichita State crash from fading", "Wichita State gives up football, too expensive", Mondout, Patrick (2005), 1970 Wichita State Football Crash Memorial: Pictures, Super70s.com, Retrieved 2009-09-10, Roadside memorial adjacent to I-70 near Colorado crash site, Present-day photos of crash site on Mount Trelease, 1960s photo of the accident aircraft in Mohawk Airlines livery, Wichita State University Football Team Airplane Crash Collection, Icelandair Flugfélag Islands Flight Fl 704, Campus of Applied Sciences and Technology, 1905 Washburn vs. Fairmount football game, Wichita State University football team plane crash, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Wichita_State_University_football_team_plane_crash&oldid=994701139, Aviation accidents and incidents in the United States in 1970, Aviation accidents and incidents involving sports teams, Accidents and incidents involving the Martin 4-0-4, Aviation accidents and incidents caused by pilot error, Airliner accidents and incidents in Colorado, Articles with unsourced statements from September 2020, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 17 December 2020, at 02:49. “Some of the greatest young men/athletes that ever came out of our state,” Featherstone said. Wichita State Crash Survivor Relives Details - The Oklahoman Crash site an important memorial for 'Gold Plane' family - Clear Creek Courant Triumph and tragedy: Scotties grad Barkell starred at Wichita State, recalls plane crash - Herald-Standard Of the 40 on board, 31 died either in the crash or as a result of injuries sustained in it. [8] The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation report stated the First Officer testified that he intended to use the charts to help point out landmarks and objects of interest to the passengers. [6] "Gold", the aircraft that later crashed, carried the starting players, head coach, and athletic director, as well as their wives, other administrators, boosters, and family. Miners building the tunnel had seen the crash and were headed up to help. A list of the 31 people killed in the Wichita State football plane crash on Oct. 2, 1970. A special time to donate to the Football ’70 Memorial Scholarship. As a student at Wichita State, Jeremy Hubbard was completely unaware of the 1970 plane crash. Every year on October 2 at 9 a.m., a wreath is placed at this memorial. Instead, their memories are preserved through families, teammates, friends and the school. Team '70, those Shockers call their fallen teammates. Wichita State University built a memorial for those who died from the crash called Memorial '70. Wichita State plane crash survivor takes on a mission of remembrance The first time Rick Stephens descended Mount Trelease, near Silver Plume, Colorado, he faded in and out of consciousness. Two of the initial 11 survivors later died of their injuries to bring the total dead to 31,[7] 14 of whom were Wichita State football players. A likeness of the football helmet for the Wichita State Shockers, circa 1970, is draped by a cap as teammates, family members and friends visit the crash site near Loveland Pass on July 27, west of Silver Plume, Colo. Wreckage from the plane, which was one of two being used to take the Shockers to play a football game against Utah State University in Logan, Utah, is still scattered on the mountain top … Three generations later, the secrets of Wichita State's devastating plane crash are still unfolding - ESPN 'Gold Plane' & Silver Plume: the Wichita State Plane Crash Revisited- Clear Creak Courant A Look at the WSU Plane Crash's Aftermath- Clear Creek Courant Crash Site an Important Memorial for 'Gold Plane' Family - Clear Creek Courant A reception will be held on the stadium concourse, then later in the day are planned screenings of short documentaries filmed about the crash. Fifty years ago today — Oct. 2, 1970 — I walked into the student newspaper office at Utah State University expecting to be given media credentials for the first college Greg Hansen: Remembering the Wichita State plane crash, 50 years later | Greg Hansen | tucson.com They know that at some point, the memorials and memories will burn only in their souls. Landing gear still remains on the mountain where the airplane went down. Site of 1970 Wichita State plane crash. [4][7], While the aircraft were refueled and serviced in Denver, First Officer Skipper purchased aeronautical sectional charts for the contemplated scenic route. “While we mourn those we lost that day, we also focus on those who survived the crash. “I asked Glenn, ‘you think it works? Today, traces of the tragic plane crash still remain on the mountain near Silver Plume, Colorado. After takeoff in clear weather, the two aircraft took divergent paths away from Denver. [4][7] The load of fuel on board did not explode immediately, allowing survivors to escape the wreckage, but the passenger cabin was eventually consumed by an explosion before those still alive and trapped inside could escape. OCT 2 1970 OCT 4 1970 Surviving members of the Wichita State University football team arrive at Stapleton International Airport in Denver Saturday morning aboard a flight from Salt Lake City, Utah. On 2 October 1970, a twin-engine plane carrying Wichita State University football players, staff and supporters crashed near Loveland Pass enroute to a game in Utah. A Wichita State University flag hangs from a tree Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, above the crash site of the Martin 404 twin-engine plane that crashed into … [citation needed]. Some are in poor health. The NTSB report stated a belief that many on board survived the initial impact, based on the testimony of survivors and rescuers. Relatives of members of the 1970 Wichita State University Shockers football team visit the crash site where an airplane carrying some of the players crashed near Loveland Pass Monday, July 27, 2020, west of Silver Plume, Colo. Wreckage from the plane, which was one of two being used to take the Shockers to play a football game against Utah State University in Logan, Utah, is still scattered on the … She answered the phone, and her son explained what had happened. Lewis was lying on the ground when he realized all his clothes were gone, shorn off by the trees. Significant factors were the overloaded condition of the aircraft, the virtual absence of flight planning for the chosen route of flight from Denver to Logan, a lack of understanding on the part of the crew of the performance capabilities and limitations of the aircraft, and the lack of operational management to monitor and appropriately control the actions of the flightcrew. Wichita State football is gone. Duren told Featherstone there was an empty seat on the black plane. Some of the survivors started down the mountain, seeking help. The designated "Black" plane transported the reserve players, assistant coaches, and other support personnel. Crash. John Yeros, back, chats with friends as they visit the crash site of an airplane carrying some members of the 1970 Wichita State University Shockers football team near … September 27, 2020, 4:00 AM Wichita Eagle photographer Travis Heying in August visited the Colorado site where a plane that carried members of the Wichita State football team crashed … All of these people were changed forever, but we have stayed very close all these years.”. He said that he would die young and would be a plane crash. Wichita State plane crash survivor takes on a mission of remembrance The first time Rick Stephens descended Mount Trelease, near Silver Plume, Colorado, he faded in and out of consciousness. Some witnesses located on higher mountainside locations, such as Loveland Pass at 11,990 feet (3,655 m), reported seeing it flying below them. A shirt for the Wichita State University Shockers football team sits on the hillside as part of the memorial as teammates, family members and friends visit the crash site … [1][2][3][4] Operated by Golden Eagle Aviation, the twin-engined propliner carried 37 passengers and a crew of three; 29 were killed at the scene and two later died of their injuries while under medical care. Memorial '70: Survivors reflect on life after WSU plane crash - KAKE News Featherstone was on the plane that didn’t crash. They were bound for Logan, Utah, to play the Utah State University Aggies the following day. This sent me back to the tragic day, 50 years ago, when Randy was killed. The 1970 Wichita State football plane crash was one of the worst in Colorado aviation history. Forty-four years ago, a plane carrying the Wichita State football team crashed in Colorado. Wichita State University built a memorial for those who died from the crash called Memorial '70. When Featherstone left John Marshall, Duren was a runt on the B team. Family and friends remember the 31 people with the Wichita State football team who died 50 years ago in a plane crash in Colorado's Rocky Mountains. Many of the 1970 Shockers have traveled to the crash site over the years, making the difficult climb to shed tears, leave mementos, offer prayers. The Marshall crash seemed to overshadow the Wichita State crash. The report concluded the crew did not allow enough time for the charts to be studied properly to avoid high terrain before takeoff commenced. As Wichita State sophomores, both had made the starting lineup the week of the Utah State game. “They got us off the plane and onto a bus and told us not to talk to anybody,” Yeros said. • Johnny Duren, wide receiver, John Marshall High School. A painting of a Wichita State football helmet, draped by a cap, is present at the crash site. Wichita State constructed a memorial for those who died from the crash called Memorial ‘70. “We had friends we were losing in Vietnam, but nobody expected a bunch of guys to go play a Saturday afternoon football game not arriving.”. Lewis, wearing only a necktie and still in shock, tried to scoot down on his butt. It’s been 50 years since the Shockers flew out for Logan, Utah, and a game against Utah State. Buttons bearing the names of the 1970 Wichita State University Shockers football team who died in an airplane crash sit in a part of the fuselage of the craft as teammates, family members and friends visit the crash site near Loveland Pass on July 27, west of Silver Plume, Colo. [AP Photo/David... Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Each year on Oct. 2 at 9 a.m., a wreath is placed at this memorial. Utah State's football team held a memorial service at the stadium where the game was to have been played and placed a wreath on the 50-yard line. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,... Eventually, a movie was made. “But of course, nobody planned on COVID.”. One of the planes proceeded to Utah via southern Wyoming, avoiding Colorado’s high mountain wall. Box 4: FF 19: Crash Notes - Schaible. Leftover rubble from the aiplane crash. The survivors are getting older. Buy Now. “Randy and I played football at Clinton High School. Forty-three days after the Wichita State plane crash, the Marshall University football team plane crashed, returning from a game at East Carolina. He’ll gaze in the direction of I-70, which stretches west through 420 miles of Kansas, then to Denver. Of the 40 on board, 31 died. He heard people moaning from inside the plane, but it was engulfed in flames. [7], Upon arrival in Wichita, the two aircraft were loaded with luggage and the passengers were boarded. Around 1 p.m., the chartered twin-engined propliner transporting the Wichita State University football team from Wichita, Kansas, crashed at the base of Mount Trelease, 8 … Friends and family members of the victims of the plane crash that killed most of the Wichita State football team go over the crash site last July. Trees remain down after being clipped by the wings of the airplane. He can be heard Monday through Friday from 4:40-5:20 p.m. on The Sports Animal radio network, including FM-98.1. A plane carrying the Wichita State football team crashed while traveling to a game at Utah State on Oct. 2, 1970. He was thrown onto a pile of mangled mess. The plane crashed into a mountainside in Colorado, killing 31 people on board. [6] After the agreements were made, the DC-6 was damaged and was unavailable for use. Now as a news anchor, KDVR and KWGN in Denver, Hubbard recently published a documentary called “Overshadowed: The Wichita State Football Plane Crash”.. Hubbard said he didn’t know much about the crash besides the memorial on campus and became fascinated as he got further on into the … None may be as fascinating or sobering as the wreckage of the 1970 Wichita State University crash. A memorial service will be staged in Cessna Stadium, which has remained even though Wichita State dropped football in 1987. Portrait of John Yeros near the site of a plane crash … But Featherstone was winning a hot and heavy game of spades; he wanted to see it through. And beyond. Lewis was sitting in the back of the plane, having migrated there in hopes he might entice a flight attendant to sit by him. Wichita State players remember their 'second season' 50 years later (8:03) Wichita State was devastated by a tragic plane crash 50 years ago. [5], It was one of two aircraft carrying the 1970 Wichita State Shockers football team to Logan, Utah, for a game against Utah State;[6] the second aircraft flew a conventional route and arrived safely in Utah. Living A Miracle. Both airplanes refueled at Denver’s Stapleton Airport. WSU Plane crash On 2 October 1970, a twin-engine plane carrying Wichita State University football players, staff and supporters crashed near Loveland Pass enroute to a game in Utah. A roadside memorial plaque listing the names of the victims is located near the Colorado crash site, adjacent to westbound Interstate 70, at Dry Gulch at milepost 217 (39°41′47″N 105°52′25″W / 39.6965°N 105.8736°W / 39.6965; -105.8736), about two miles (3 km) east of the Eisenhower Tunnel. She also asked a question. Fifty years ago, tragedy struck the Wichita State football program. He wants his home state to remember the four victims from Oklahoma. It’s here a plane carrying the Wichita State football team crashed while traveling to a game at Utah State on Oct. 2, 1970. That day, I cried. Some have died. Credit: Denver Post (Denver Post via Getty Images) Denver Post Denver Post The memories of the 31 people who died in a plane crash on Oct. 2, 1970 — including 14 members of the football team, 14 staff and boosters, and three crew members — are honored every year at Wichita State’s Memorial ’70 observance, but survivors, friends and family choose to remember their loved ones by hiking up to the crash site located on a mountain west of Silver Plume, Colorado. "[5], Wichita State and Utah State had played in five of the previous six seasons, but never met again in football. Like everyone else, he was cut and burned. [6] A pair of Martin 4-0-4s (which had not flown since 1967) were re-certified for flight. The Wichita State University football team plane crash refers to a 1970 plane crash. The names of the 31 people who died in the 1970 Wichita State football plane crash are on a memorial on the western edge of the WSU campus, near Hillside Street. This might be the end of the official Wichita State commemorances. On Friday, October 2, 1970, a pair of Martin 404 twin-engine aircraft took off from Wichita, Kansas, carrying the Wichita State University (WSU) football team, coaches, and VIP supporters. HESSTON—Gary King played the role of a victim for a while after the Wichita State University plane crash that claimed his parents on Oct. 2, 1970. (2000, October 1). They will meet again Friday on the Wichita State campus, more than 30 strong, along with dozens of friends and family of victims and survivors. [14] The first officer (company president) survived; he was flying the plane from the left seat. Wichita State University held a memorial service at Cessna Stadium on Friday honoring both the victims and survivors of a plane crash 50 years ago. Lewis and Donnie Christian were best friends in Duncan. “They are still greatly missed to this day,” Featherstone said. Almost every day, Dave Lewis walks out onto his back deck, gingerly, because his left leg remains a medical textbook, after six surgeries and four total knee replacements. You can also view his personality page at oklahoman.com/berrytramel. [5][15][16] The remaining members of the Wichita State team, with the NCAA and Missouri Valley Conference allowing freshman players to fill out the squad, decided to continue the 1970 season; it was later designated the "Second Season. “I look up there and think of them.”. By the time Duren graduated, he was “a superstar,” Featherstone said. Teammates, family members and friends visit the crash site of an airplane carrying members of the 1970 Wichita State University Shockers football team near … “He was a good guy. On October 2, 1970, these were ferried from the Jack Richards Aircraft Company facilities in Oklahoma City to Wichita, instead of the DC-6. Of the 31 people killed, 14 were Wichita State football players. [7] This is the story of the crash, and what happened after. “Donnie was the strongest guy I ever met,” Lewis said. “I honor their memory every day,” Lewis said. The remnants of that Wichita State team have spent half a century honoring the memory of those who died. Lewis could have been on the list. “We do so to remember and honor our friends and to renew our relationships with each other,” Featherstone said. “That was the last time I saw Johnny.”. Lewis takes a list with him onto the deck. Commenting on NewsOK requires a NewsOK Pro or Oklahoman subscription. That decision proved to be deadly when one plane went down, taking the lives of 32 people on board, including members of the Wichita State University football team, coaches and boosters. That decision proved to be deadly when one plane went down, taking the lives of 32 people on board, including members of the Wichita State University football team, coaches and boosters. It crashed around 1 p.m. about 40 miles west of Denver on Mount Trelease. Detailed directions and photos can be found on Mountainouswords.com. But as they wound their way between the peaks, disaster struck: the plane became boxed into an inescapable … The charred wreckage of N464M lies on a Colorado mountainside some hours after the crash. They were dozen and tearful over loss of friends in Friday crash. All 75 people aboard died. Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. When the aircrafts stopped for fueling in Denver, the players stretched their legs on the tarmac. Morgan Anderson. I knew almost every one of those killed. Fifty years ago today — Oct. 2, 1970 — I walked into the student newspaper office at Utah State University expecting to be given media credentials for the first college Greg Hansen: Remembering the Wichita State plane crash, 50 years later | Greg Hansen | tucson.com Lewis and teammate Glenn Kostal were placed in a miner’s shack so they could lay down. Fifty years after his grandfather was killed in the crash of a plane carrying WSU football players and others to a game in Utah, Evan Fahrbach is pursuing an MBA at Wichita State with the help of a scholarship created to honor those in the crash. David Zalubowski/AP A likeness of the football helmet for the Wichita State Shockers, circa 1970, is draped by a cap as teammates, family members and friends visit the crash site … All the girls loved him. Gary, 16, and his older sister, Mary Lynne, had to grow up in a hurry. There was never a cross word said between us.”. A dazed Hoheisel and a few of his teammates were met on the mountain by a construction worker who was helping build the Eisenhower Tunnel on I-70, below the crash site. [7] Crash survivor Rick Stephens was a senior guard and stated in 2013, "...as we flew along over I-70, that there were old mines and old vehicles above us. "[11], The overloaded aircraft,[12][13] nearing Loveland Pass as it flew up Clear Creek Valley, became trapped in a box canyon and was unable to climb above the mountain ridges surrounding it on three sides, nor complete a reversal turn away from the sharply rising terrain. In clear and calm weather in Colorado at 1:14 p.m. MDT on Friday, October 2, 1970, a chartered Martin 4-0-4 airliner crashed into a mountain eight miles (13 km) west of Silver Plume. Over the years, hikers have left behind mementos and other paraphernalia at site of the Wichita State University 1970 plane crash. [8], The two aircraft were dubbed "Gold" and "Black" after the school colors. Another 14 were university staff members and football boosters. Pilot errors, including poor in-flight decisions and inadequate pre-flight planning, were officially reported as leading to the crash. [17] Wichita State discontinued varsity football after the 1986 season.[18]. The plane hit the side of a mountain and 31 people were killed. Fifty years since one of the planes took the traditional route from Denver after a fuel stop, and the other plane took a scenic route. [4] At 1:14 p.m. MDT, the "Gold" aircraft struck trees on the east slope of Mount Trelease, 1,600 feet (490 m) below its summit, and crashed. One of the caretakers of that history is John Yeros, a wide receiver who was on the reserve plane. Lewis doesn’t know how far he got before those miners found him. National Honor Society member.”. Berry Tramel: Berry can be reached at 405-760-8080 or at btramel@oklahoman.com. Featherstone spent 34 years in law enforcement but still breaks down when talking about his friends who never made it to Logan. “I could talk for hours about my memories,” Featherstone said. [14], 1970 Wichita State Shockers football team, Mondout, Patrick (2005), Air Crash In Rockies Kills Wichita State Football Players, Super70s.com, Retrieved 2009-09-10, NTSB Aircraft Accident Report, SA-421, File No. Their legs on the Black plane for the climb over the years, those Shockers have assembled in to... Oklahoman subscription into the country, and her son explained what had happened, Kansas, about six miles of. Assistant coaches, and a game at Utah State errors, including poor in-flight decisions and pre-flight... Aircraft were loaded with luggage and the passengers were boarded State game word said between us....., to play the Utah State on Oct. 2, 1970 site, adjacent to westbound Interstate 70 Wichita! 1986 season. 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