Unionville, MO Jet Plane Destroyed In Mid Air, May 1962
45 KILLED AS CONTINENTAL JET PLANE IS TORN APART.
ONE FOUND ALIVE BUT SOON DIES.
Unionville, Mo., May 23 (AP) -- A $5-million Continental Airlines jet, possibly torn apart by a violent storm fell to the ground in sections Tuesday night, killing all 45 persond aboard.
Although violent storms raged across souther Iowa during the night, there was speculation today that a second plane may have been involved in the crash. Authorities at Kirksville reported that pieces of a plane which did not seem to be part of the jet had been found.
The only known survivor, rescued from an intact section of the fuselage after an all-night search, died in a hospital 90 minutes after rescue.
He was TAKEHIKO NAKANO, 27, an engineer who carried business cards listing addresses in Oak Park, Ill., and Los Angeles.
He was removed from the middle section of the fuselage, which, shorn of its wings and tail section, plunged into a shallow gully about 20 miles from where debris first started spewing from the doomed plane.
The plane left Chicago's O'Hare Airport at 9:25 p.m., Central Daylight Time and was due in Kansas City at 9:35 p.m. Central Standard Time.
"Morgue" Is Garage.
A temporary morgue was set up in a garage in Unionville, a small community just south of the Iowa line.
The plane was Continental's Flight 11 en route from Chicago to Kansas City and Los Angeles with 37 passengers and a crew of 8.
It apparently broke up over Centerville, Iowa, about 20 miles north of here.
The fuselage lay undiscovered in a clover field on a farm, operated by TERRY BONNELL, from about 9:40 p.m. (CST) when it vanished from a radar surveillance screen until after dawn.
DEWEY E. BALLARD, air carrier operations inspector for the Federal Aviation Agency at Kansas City, viewed the fuselage this morning and said it appeared to have been broken up "by some tremendous force."
"This tremendous force," said BALLARD, "might have been a tornado or extremely heavy turbulence."
He said the plane apparently broke apart in the air and pieces spread out as they fell.
The inside of the fuselage was a jumble of bodies, seats, luggage and clothing.
NAKANO was found half way down on the right side of the intact section, lying with his back against three seats.
When told help had reached him he was able to respond only feebly. He died in St. Joseph's hospital in Centerville.
The craft, a Boeing 707 piloted by veteran Capt. FRED GRAY of Pacific Palisades, Calif., made its last report at 9:15 p.m. from a position 35 miles northeast of Kirksville, Mo.
This was about 120 air miles northeast of Kansas City where it was due to land about 25 minutes later.
The plane then disappeared from the FAA surveillance radar at Kansas City.
The crash was the first involving fatalities on a Continental Airlines plane in the company's 28 years of operation.
It was the second involving a 707 jet since the first of the year.
An American Airlines 707 crashed in Jamaica Bay, N. Y., last March 1, taking the lives of 95 persons.
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