Zuni, NM Plane Crash Kills Eight, Sep 1929

FIND PLANE; PASSENGERS DEAD. EXTRA !!

STRUCK BY LIGHTNING, T.A.T. MACHINE DROPPED IN BLACK ROCK WASH, 26 MILES SOUTH OF GALLUP.

Had Been MIssing Since Tuesday Morning When It Was Last Seen Near Grants, N. M. -- Extensive Search for Two Days Finally Results In Discovery Of Bodies Of Victims In Wrecked Plane.

The Transcontinental Air Transport corporation officials here Wednesday evening at 6:20 confirmed a report receive by the Journal from the Associated Press and its special corresponent[sic] at Winslow, Ariz., that the Los Angeles bound plane 'City of San Francisco,' which had been missing since Tuesday morning, when it was last seen near Grants, N. M., had been found wrecked, near Zuni, N. M., with all on board dead. The plane had been struck by lightning.
The dead are:
A. B. McGAFFEY, Albuquerque, lumberman.
MRS. GEORGE B. RAYMOND, Los Angeles, daughter of A. W. HORTON, field manager at Albuquerque of T. A. T.
HARRIS LIVERMORE, Boston.
WILLIAM H. BEERS, New York.
M. M. CAMPBELL, Cincinnati.
J. B. STOWE, pilot, Long Beach, Calif.
EDWIN A. DEITEL, co-pilot, New Braunfels, Texas.
C. F. CANFIELD, courier.
Transcontinental Air Transport's passenger liner City of San Francisco, with a crew of three, and five passengers aboard, which left Albuquerque, N. M., at 10:20 a. m. Tuesday, was found Wednesday near Black Rock, 26 miles south of Gallup, with all of the passengers and crew dead.
T. A. T. service planes from Winslow, Ariz., and Albuquerque and private planes patrolled east and west over the route Wednesday after the transport had failed to check in at Winslow, until one located in Wednesday.
Advices to the Journal, telephoned in at 6:05 Wednesday night from Winslow, stating that the T. A. T. officials at that point had received a message from Gallup stating that the plane had been found and that all on board were dead. It was believed, the report stated, that the plane had been struck by lightning.
A similar report from the Associated Press, through Los Angeles, said that the Santa Fe railroad received an unconfirmed report early Wednesday evening from Gallup, M. M., that the missing Transcontinental Air Transport City of San Francisco was wrecked 25 miles south of Gallup, with all eight aboard dead. The report indicated that the ship had been struck by lightning. The Santa Fe agent at Gallup said he was seeking to verify the report and obtain additional details.

T.A.T. PILOT WAS FIGHTING STORM AND TREACHEROUS GROUND TO MAKE ANY FORCED LANDING.
Los Angeles, Sept. 4 (AP) -- The treacherous nature of the terrain along the New Mexico-Arizona border and the fact that a storm was passing over that part of the country at the time the Transcontinental Air Transport's missing passenger plane, the City of San Francisco, was last seen, indicates the odds against which pilot J. B. STOWE, was fighting in attempting to bring his craft safely through to Winslow.
Almost directly west of Grants, N. M., where the transport was seen veering to the south, the Zuni and Oso mountains rear saw edges, while south and west a lava bed, measuring 70 miles north and south and 35 miles east and west, prohibits any attempt, at landing an airplane except in emergency. The bed is covered with jagged pinacles which pierce shoe-leather and make walking across it almost impossible.
If STOWE drove his plane south of the mountains, it would have been possible for him to miss all but a portion of the lava bed, provided he did not swing too far in clearing the Oso range. From there well into Arizona, however, 100 miles or more from Grants, he would be forced to fly over extinct volcanic peaks, lava outcroppings, and washes filled with jagged, flint-like volcanic rock in the little known and usually avoided Pluto country.
At St. Johns, Arizona, approximately 100 miles from Grants on the Little Colorado river, possible landing facilities are afforded where the river has cut of a flat in the desert formation. A plane forced down threre is a storm, however, would be likely to find the Little Colorado swelled into a roaring torrent, far out of its banks and usurping most of the usually dry flat country. To the south, peaks ranging from 7,000 to 11,000 feet in altitude form a barrier.
Only by penetrating far into the state of Arizona would the plane be afforded anything resembling a safe landing field.

Albuquerque Journal New Mexico 1929-09-05