Londonderry, VT. – February 3, 1975

Londonderry, Vermont – February 3, 1975

     On the night of February 3, 1975, two U.S. Air Force F-111A Aircraft, (68-0280, and 69-6505), were passing over the area of Londonderry, Vermont, on a training flight, when they were involved in a mid-air collision.  The two-man crew of both aircraft ejected safely and landed near the Magic Mountain Ski Resort in Londonderry. 

     The accident occurred as the aircraft were getting ready for an in-flight re-fueling operation.   

     Both aircraft were assigned to the 34oth Bomb Group, 380th Bomb, based at Plattsburg, New York. 

     Sources:

     Providence Evening Bulletin, “4 Escape Air Crash”, February 4, 1975, page A6. 

     Aviation Safety Network, Wikibase #152909

Barre, VT. – December 9, 1960

Barre, Vermont – December 9, 1960

 

B-52 Stratofortress
U.S. Air Force Photo

     On December 9, 1960, a B-52 Stratofortress, (Ser. No. 55-0114), left Westover Air Force Base in Chicopee, Massachusetts, for a training flight that would take it over upstate New York.  While over the Adirondack Mountians the aircraft experienced a significant drop in altitude and the crew, believing the aircraft was going to crash, ejected.   After all eight crewmen left the aircraft, the B-52 continued on for nearly one-hundred miles before crashing on the outskirts of Barre, Vermont, near the Plainfield town line.  The plane exploded on impact and was blown to pieces.  

     The crew were identified as:

     Pilot: Captain William T. Combs, 42, of Bristol, Va.

     Co-pilot: Lieutenant James Saravo, 25, of Newport, R.I.

     Navigator: Captain Ronald D. Little, 29, of Altoona, Pa.

     Radar Observer: Major Karl E. Keyes, 43, of Hyattsville, Md.

     Electronics Warfare Officer: 1st Lieutenant George M. Davis, of Pawtucket, R.I.

     Tail Gunner: Staff Sergeant Pierre J. Maheux, of Auburn, Maine.

     Instructor Pilot: Major Henry Luscomb, 41, of Simsbury, Ct.

     Airman 1C Charles E. Morris, 32, of Clearwater, Fl.

     The aircraft was part of the 348th Bomber Squadron, 99th Bombardment Group, based at Westover AFB.       

     Most of the crew came down in the Schroon Lake region.  Some were injured, and each faced dealing with below freezing temperatures before being rescued.  All would later recover.

     After two days the only crewman unaccounted for was Staff Sergeant Maheux.  His remains were found by a fisherman several months later on July 4, 1961.  He’s buried in St. Peters Cemetery, in Lewiston, Maine.     

     Sources:

     Springfield Union, “B52 From Westover Crashes In Vermont”, December 10, 1960, page 1.

     Springfield Union, “6 Westover Fliers Found; Search Is On For 2 Others”, December 12, 1960  

     Springfield Union, “Seventh Man Rescued In AF Plane Crash”,

     www.findagrave.com  memorial #121568372

Kirby, VT – February 2, 1989

Kirby, Vermont – February 2, 1989

    

FB-111 U.S. Air Force Photo

FB-111
U.S. Air Force Photo

     On February 2, 1989, an FB-111 out of Plattsburgh, N.Y., was on a training flight over Vermont, when a problem with one of the fuel tanks forced the crew to bail out.  The pilot, Captain Randall F. Voorhees, 31, of Upper Darby, PA, and his radar navigator, Captain Len J. Esterly Jr., 30, of Reading, PA, parachuted to safety with only minor injuries.

     The aircraft crashed and exploded in a wooded area about a mile off Route 2, in the town of Kirby, Vermont.   

 

 

 

FB-111 U.S. Air Force Photo

FB-111
U.S. Air Force Photo

Source:

(Nashua, New Hampshire newspaper) The Telegraph, Associated Press article by Jill Arabas, “Air Force To Probe Fighter Plane Crash In Vermont”, February 3, 1989, Pg. 6.

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