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Talihina Crash Remembrance Featured

Written by  Tuesday, 13 August 2019 11:22
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Plane crash near Talihina of Air Force Plane B-29 September 26, 1949.  Picture taken by Jim Nicholson. Plane crash near Talihina of Air Force Plane B-29 September 26, 1949. Picture taken by Jim Nicholson.

By Vera Nelson, Talihina Chamber of Commerce


A Remembrance of the 13 Airforce Men who lost their lives in a plane crash near Talihina will be held Saturday, Sept 28, 2019 in honor of the seventieth anniversary of this tragic incident.


It will begin at 11a.m. with a parade followed by speakers and the unveiling of the memorial plaque.

Families of the crash victims will be present for all the activities. The men lost their lives far from their families, and they are getting the recognition they deserve at last.

Sept 26, 1949 an Air Force B-29 bomber crashed and burned near Talihina. All 13 onboard died. The B-29 was on a training flight when it crashed.

People from Talihina and Albion heard a plane in trouble. They looked up to see a large Air Force B-29 bomber circle overhead. The plane entered a flat spin falling from the sky, crashed and burned in a wooded area six miles southwest of Talihina.

The plane was on a flight from Smoky Hill AFB, Salina, Kansas. At 6:55 pm they radioed their position over Fort Smith at 25,000 feet proceeding to Perrin AFB, Texas. Twenty minutes later it crashed. The official investigation speculated an explosive decompression lead to the crash.


The names of the men are as follows:


Pilot 1st Lt. Robert B. Black; Co-pilot 1st Lt. Harold S. Spicer; Navigator 1st Lt. Phillip L. Benefield;
Bombardier 1st Lt. Jack E. McDannell; Radar Operator Capt. Julian B. Massey; Radar Operator 1st Lt. Thomas F. Carlow;
Engr. M/Sgt William H. Day; S/Engr. Cpl. Theodore P. Sells; Radio Operator S/Sgt Charles G. Slifkey;
Radio Operator S/Sgt Thomas M. Crean; Gunner S/Sgt Charles A. Jellings; Gunner Sgt Harold M. Hanna; Gunner S/Sgt Robert O. Troyer
SAC 15th AF, 301st Bomber Group, 352nd Squadron, Smoky Hill AFB, Salina, Kansas.


Please plan on joining us Saturday, September 28th to pay homage to these Airforce men and their families.

David Deaton

Digital Editor at Oklahoma Welcome

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