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Offline toleary34Topic starter
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« on: May 21, 2010, 07:03:34 pm »
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When my dad was a cop he responded to a robbery and during the investigation he bumped into this old airplane propeller and the owner said that he wanted to get rid of it because its rugged edges kept cutting people...my dad was quick and happy to take it off of his hands.  it is from an old Boeing 247-D that crashed here in the high altitude rugged mountains of Utah in 1936.  There were seven people on board and all perished from the crash into the high cliffs.  on this propeller is engraved a picture of the aircraft that went down and the words;

" propeller of motor of plane that crashed December 15th 1936 near Alpine, Utah W.A.E"

the initials WAE standing for Western Air Express.  I have the written history of this particular crash from a guy my dad knew, that fell in love with the story and gathered all of the facts from it. in the book it has a picture of a guy actually carrying this same propeller off the rugged mountains.  i was going to try and post the picture of the picture, but it is far to grainy.  My dad also said that the crash appeared in a 1936 or 1937 issue of the LIFE or LOOK magazine, and that the same picture is in there as well, so if i can track it down and post a clearer picture than the one i took, I will.  take care everyone.

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Offline Mudflap
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« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2010, 07:12:07 pm »
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Wow! That's cool!



Jim

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« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2010, 07:14:29 pm »
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I cleared the Dup Post!    Great

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« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2010, 07:59:42 pm »
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That's a definite piece of history there.

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Offline toleary34Topic starter
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« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2010, 08:55:35 pm »
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   this had a base that it was mounted on, but the difference between the metal is starting to corode the prop so it's seperated from the stand.  the stand itself is kind of cool also, because it has the planes picture engraved on it with the writing " Sheriff Young, Salt Lake County Sheriff."  My guess would be that this was made for the leader of the search and rescue party for the crash.  my dad gave me the little book of the history of the crash and it mentioned another deputy that just so happened to be a friend of my dads uncle.  so my dad actually grew up knowing this guy that was on the actual search...kind of cool i thought.

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Offline K5EXX
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« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2010, 11:19:04 pm »
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Did you know that Amelia Earhardt assisted in located this downed plane? I was doing some research on it since you posted the pictures.



December 15, 1936
Western Air Express, Inc.
Boeing 247D (NC13370)
Near Salt Lake City, Utah

Western Air Express Trip No. 6 originated in Burbank, California with stops in Las Vegas, Nevada and Salt Lake City, Utah. During the approach to Salt Lake City, the flight encountered snow static which rendered the aircraft's navigation receivers inoperative.

Without a definite course to follow, the flight drifted east into mountainous terrain. WAL Trip 6 crashed into Lone Peak in the Wasatch Range killing all 7 passengers and crew.

An extensive search for the aircraft followed, which included Amelia Earhardt participating in the effort. The aircraft wreckage was eventually located during July 1937.


Here is the original DOT accident report for that particular flight in pdf format.

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Here is the article from the Kingsport Times in Tennessee in December of 1936...see below.


Salt Lake City, UT (25 miles SW) Plane Crash, Dec 1936
Posted February 21st, 2010 by Stu Beitler

ABANDON HOPE FOR OCCUPANTS AND MISSING PLANE.

SEARCHERS CONFIDENT PLANE WILL BE FOUND; TRACKS FOUND IN MOUNTAIN.

SEVEN ABOARD.

PASSENGERS AND CREW BELIEVED TO HAVE CRASHED TO DEATH IN HEAVY FOG.

Salt Lake City, Dec. 17. (AP) -- A freshly sheared mountain tree and possible "tracks of an airplane" drew searchers into a snow-drifted wilderness today, confident the fate of an airliner carrying two women and five men would be known by nightfall.
The passengers -- including a pretty stewardess who stepped deftly in and out of a triangular romance -- were feared to have crashed to death or to have died of exposure.
The hunt centered on the western slope of the Wasatch Mountains, 25 miles southwest of Salt Lake City, where several persons reported hearing a sputtering airplane motor early Tuesday, the day the Los Angeles-Salt Lake City Western Air express transport disappeared.

Believe Located.
At dusk yesterday a broken tree was found atop a ridge and on the nearby rim of a canyon were deep indentations in the shale. J. I. Hess, forest service foreman, said they "might be tracks of an airplane."
A sudden snowstorm cut short investigation last night.
Grimly, A. E. Cahlan of Las Vegas, spokesman for Western Air Express, admitted that officials believed "the plane's occupants have perished."
The missing were:
MR. and MRS. JOHN F. WOLFE, of Chicago, married only 17 days ago.
HENRY W. EDWARDS, Minneapolis, a representative of Northwest Airlines.
CARL CHRISTOPHER, Dwight, Ill., on his way home when informed his wife was seriously ill.
Stewardess GLADYS WITT, who recently made the headlines with a cross-country romantic mixup.
S. J. SAMSON, Pilot.
WILLIAM BOGEN, Pilot.

Kingsport Times Tennessee 1936-12-17


I have not found any pics of the crash site or of the plane itself.

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Mark - K5EXX
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« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2010, 11:31:10 pm »
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Nice post, and Nice info,  K5EXX

I have always found plane crash sites interesting.
There is so much to be learned there, and it is humbling to say the least.

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Offline K5EXX
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« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2010, 11:42:19 pm »
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No problem. Toleary34 finds so many interesting things up there in his area, I find them very interesting to research.

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Offline toleary34Topic starter
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« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2010, 12:09:26 pm »
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     Excellent research Mark! ! thank you very very much for the information.  I did find that she had helped with he search effort, and think that she was actually criticized for it.  I have a little book on the history of this particular crash at home, but haven't been able to really sit down and read it yet.  I don't want to speak out of turn, and give the wrong info, and will research it more when i get home.  But I think that it was saying how she came into Salt Lake, and insisted that the aircraft had over shot Salt Lake and kept heading North, so she flew and search North when everyone suspected that it crashed miles South of the valley, and that's where the criticism towards her came in.

     It's funny because Lone Peak is literally in the front yard from my parents house.  I used to climb Mount Olympus which is directly in front of my parents house...and then the next mountain to the South if you were standing in my parents front yard is Twin Peaks...and the mountain to the south of that is Lone Peak.  My dad an I have talked about making an expedition out of it and hiking up to that wreckage, as well as the wreckage of a B-25 that slammed into Twin Peaks, which is the mountain next to Lone Peak.  There are quite a few plane wreckages around here that I want to find and hike to.

     Quite a few of these wreckages are older aircraft.  There is another crash site that really interests me in the Uintah mountains here in Utah.  Remember when aviation history was brand new and they had those cross country flights to see who could go a certain distance over a certain period of time?  Well this crash site is from the 1920's when a Japanese Pilot from overseas crashed and died during one of these historical flights.  There is a marker up in the mountains there in his honor, and it gives the general distance and direction....that would be a cool one to find.  and a hard one to find as well, given the materials to make aircraft back then differ from other aircraft wreckages.  thank you all for your support, research, and posts....i truly do appreciate it all

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« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2010, 10:02:13 pm »
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I recently hiked to the site of the wreckage from this crash. It was very difficult to get to. Here's a pic of the debris note the distinctive red paint from Western Air Express. I'm interested in writing an article about the crash. I'd kill to get my hands on the book that you mention detailing the recovery effort. Write me at jim.hed@comcast.net with any details. Anything would be appreciated.

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