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USAF C-119 Flying Boxcar Crash in the Yukon, 1961


Chicago Daily Tribune: Saturday, November 25, 1961

1961 - Hunt 2 Victims of C-119 Crash in Yukon Snow. 3 Survivors Found; Recover 2 Bodies


    WHITEHORSE, Yukon Territory, Canada, Nov. 24 (UPI) - Two ground parties and two airplanes searched an area of 64 square miles south of here today for two United States airmen, missing after they parachuted yesterday from a crippled C-119 Flying Boxcar.

    The two men bailed out of the plane shortly before it crashed and burned about 17 miles south of here, killing five crewmen. Three other men who parachuted from the plane were rescued late yesterday.

Temperature Below Zero

    An Alaska Air Command spokesman said the search was being conducted in a "very mountainous and heavily wooded area about 8 miles square." The weather was reported to be clear with temperatures ranging from as low as four degrees below zero.

    The bodies of two men were found outside the burned wreckage and three bodies were believed to be still inside the plane. Rescue parties reported the aircraft was still burning early today.

    The C-119 took off from Whitehorse, following another Flying Boxcar, only minutes before the crash. Both were headed for the next stop, McChord air force base, near Tacoma, Wash., on a flight from Anchorage to home base at Ellington air force base near Houston, Tex.

    The planes and crewmen were returning home after participating in operation King Crab II - a joint armed forces maneuver held on Kodiak Island last week-end. The entire 446th troop carrier wing [reserve] from Ellington came to participate in the exercises.

Three Believed Inside

    The remains found outside the wreckage were identified as those of Airman 1/C William J. Murphy, 25, Houston, a city traffic policeman in civilian life; and Airman 1/C David L. Paul, 38, League City, a civilian mechanic at Ellington.

    The three, whose bodies were believed still in the plane, and those two still missing were identified as:

    Capt. Wayne D. Sager, 37, Houston, pilot; Capt. Milton L. Kimey, 38, Houston, co-pilot; Capt. Alan Jon White, 28, Houston, navigator; M. Sgt. Roger J. Forstner, 48, and Ellington maintenance chief; and S. Sgt. Lonnie Z. Foremen, 36, Genoa. It was not known immediately which two of these five had parachuted.

    The three Texans rescued yesterday are S. Sgt. Leroy Cotton, Galena Park; Airman 1/C Jean R. Conklin, Genoa; and S. Sgt. Clyde Nicholas, Pasadena. Cotton and Conklin had minor injuries. Nicholas was bruised and in shock.





    This crash was caused by a seized brake drum that caught fire. The wreckage remains on site, close to the Annie Lake Road - indicated by the arrow at the bottom centre of the photo below. Click on it to enlarge it.

Wreckage of a 1961 C-119 Flying Boxcar Crash in the Yukon



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