They took off and headed west to a refueling stopover in Denver at Stapleton Airport; from there they would continue to Logan Airport in northern Utah. Pilot errors, including poor in-flight decisions and inadequate pre-flight planning, were officially reported as leading to the crash. , 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. 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. Christian sat two rows ahead of Lewis. • Randy Kiesau, defensive back, Clinton High School. Lewis was sitting in the back of the plane, having migrated there in hopes he might entice a flight attendant to sit by him. Forty-three days after the Wichita State plane crash, the Marshall University football team plane crashed, returning from a game at East Carolina. Lewis, wearing only a necktie and still in shock, tried to scoot down on his butt. “Guys we lost who didn’t get to live their lives. Leftover rubble from the aiplane crash. The Wichita State plane crash is often forgotten and overshadowed because of a similar accident that happened just 43 days later. 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. As a student at Wichita State, Jeremy Hubbard was completely unaware of the 1970 plane crash. , 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. Gary, 16, and his older sister, Mary Lynne, had to grow up in a hurry. The remnants of that Wichita State team have spent half a century honoring the memory of those who died. • Don Christian, defensive back, Duncan High School. Sports editor for The Sunflower, Sean Marty, observes the 1970 Wichita State plane crash site on Sunday, Sept. 27 near Silver Plume, Colorado. The plane crashed into a mountainside in Colorado, killing 31 people on board. Over the years, hikers have left behind mementos and other paraphernalia at site of the Wichita State University 1970 plane crash.  The four-engined DC-6 was a large, powerful aircraft that could accommodate the entire team. Lewis could have been on the list. 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. But Featherstone has a particular mission. A memorial stands on the campus, and enhancements will be unveiled Friday. It’s been 50 years since the Shockers flew out for Logan, Utah, and a game against Utah State. Section of wing with landing gear still visible. Featherstone, a retired Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation agent, was Lewis’ teammate with those 1970 Wheatshockers. 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 … 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. 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. One of the deceased passengers was an off-duty flight attendant who was assisting. The scenery stopped in the canyon of Mount Trelease, above where the Eisenhower Tunnel was being constructed around I-70, 60 miles west of Denver. Wichita State University Football Team Plane Crashes in Clear Creek Canyon. Some are in poor health. They never arrived. Two of the initial 11 survivors later died of their injuries to bring the total dead to 31, 14 of whom were Wichita State football players. Decades after a tragic plane crash took the lives of 31 people, families are still coping with their loss. But in this part of the country, those of us alive at the time well remember the somber news from Oct. 2, 1970. “I stayed where I was,” Featherstone said. Lewis’ seat belt was off.  A pair of Martin 4-0-4s (which had not flown since 1967) were re-certified for flight. • Johnny Duren, wide receiver, John Marshall High School. “He was a good guy. , It was one of two aircraft carrying the 1970 Wichita State Shockers football team to Logan, Utah, for a game against Utah State; the second aircraft flew a conventional route and arrived safely in Utah.  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. Lewis and Donnie Christian were best friends in Duncan. A special time to donate to the Football ’70 Memorial Scholarship.  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. 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 … “They are still greatly missed to this day. “They are still greatly missed to this day,” Featherstone said. So Lewis called his mother at work back in Duncan. The starters generally flew on the gold plane, but Featherstone mistakenly still was assigned to the black plane for the trip. The plane hit the side of a mountain and 31 people were killed. On Friday October 2 in that year, at 1:14 p.m., a Martin 4-0-4 aircraft flown by Golden Eagle Aviation crashed into a mountain eight miles west of Silver Plume, Colorado. “We Are Marshall.” Marshall football rebounded and has thrived. The report concluded the crew did not allow enough time for the charts to be studied properly to avoid high terrain before takeoff commenced. Site of 1970 Wichita State plane crash. , Of the total of 40 on board, the death count at the scene was 29, which included 27 passengers, the captain, and flight attendant. But Featherstone was winning a hot and heavy game of spades; he wanted to see it through. All 75 people aboard died. , The two aircraft were dubbed "Gold" and "Black" after the school colors. 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. 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. 31 out of the 40 people on board were killed. Could have been on Rusty Featherstone’s list. 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 The Marshall crash seemed to overshadow the Wichita State crash. Years later, Lewis would learn that teammate Mike Bruce, another survivor, pushed him through a hole to exit the hell of the crash. So for 50 years, he’s remembered not just the names and faces, but the spirit that made those names and faces soar. Log in or subscribe to read and leave comments. Duren told Featherstone there was an empty seat on the black plane. “He was a chick magnet. Lewis was lying on the ground when he realized all his clothes were gone, shorn off by the trees. “I could talk for hours about my memories,” Featherstone said. Detailed directions and photos can be found on Mountainouswords.com. Credit: Denver Post (Denver Post via Getty Images) Denver Post Denver Post The Shockers traveled in two planes. “That was the last time I saw Johnny.”. A roadside memorial plaque listing the names of the victims is located near the Colorado crash site, adjacent to westbound Interstate 70. Wichita State University built a memorial for those who died from the crash called Memorial '70. , The President of Golden Eagle Aviation, Ronald G. Skipper (1936–2003), was the pilot flying "Gold. , Classes at Wichita State were canceled for Monday, October 5, and a memorial service was held that evening on campus at Cessna Stadium. Dave Lewis dug up a small pine tree and replanted it in his Overland Park yard. Pilot errors, including poor in-flight decisions and inadequate pre-flight planning, were officially reported as leading to the 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. 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.  First to arrive at the crash scene were construction workers from the nearby Eisenhower Tunnel project and motorists on U.S. 6 (I-70). They noticed a phone. On Oct. 2, 1970, two planes carrying Wichita State football players, fans, family members, and crew took off from the Denver airport to fly to the Utah State for an away game. 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. 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. , Upon arrival in Wichita, the two aircraft were loaded with luggage and the passengers were boarded. " 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 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 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. 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 The 1970 Wichita State football plane crash was one of the worst in Colorado aviation history. “All four of these guys were great young men,” Featherstone said. They were bound for Logan, Utah, to play the Utah State University Aggies the following day. Featherstone grew up with Duren. Portrait of John Yeros near the site of a plane crash … PHOTOS: 50 years after the Wichita State plane crash in 1970, remains still lie on the mountain near Silver Plume, Colorado. Newspaper clippings, including The Sunflower, Wichita State News, and Midway, regarding the plane crash, the memorial, and follow-up stories on the victim’s families. Less scenic, this route allowed more time to gain altitude for the climb over the Rocky Mountains. 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 … The other crew flying the "Black" aircraft adhered to the original flight plan and took a more northerly route, heading north from Denver to southern Wyoming then west, using a designated airway. “Class president. I knew almost every one of those killed. They know that at some point, the memorials and memories will burn only in their souls. Another 14 were university staff members and football boosters. 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. 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 … Featherstone was on the plane that didn’t crash. The s… 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. Some of the survivors started down the mountain, seeking help. Then he informed the rest of the players and coaches on the Black Plane of the Gold Plane crash. 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. 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. ", The overloaded aircraft, 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. A list of the 31 people killed in the Wichita State football plane crash on Oct. 2, 1970. 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. “But of course, nobody planned on COVID.”. Black & Gold: Remembering The WSU Plane Crash video by KPTS. 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. Team '70, those Shockers call their fallen teammates. Nine people survived the crash. This sent me back to the tragic day, 50 years ago, when Randy was killed.  A trail to the wreck site via Dry Gulch is 0.4 miles past the memorial off exit 216. A memorial service will be staged in Cessna Stadium, which has remained even though Wichita State dropped football in 1987. After takeoff in clear weather, the two aircraft took divergent paths away from Denver. Wichita State players remember their 'second season' 50 years later (8:03) Wichita State was devastated by a tragic plane crash 50 years ago. Lutz, B. Let’s just try it,” Lewis said. 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