Thursday, April 24, 2008

Wrecks in Washington

This site is meant to cover and discuss aircraft wrecks in Washington State. It is meant to fill a niche that I have found to be wide open. There are sites devoted to wrecks in Arizona, California, Oklahoma, and Maine...not to mention numerous others. Not one seems to find Washington very interesting. I do. I live in Washington and since gas prices have risen SO high, I think it high time someone take up the torch and discuss this subject.

I will probably try to focus on the accident reports I have gotten concerning the wrecks in question. I have several. Over the last 8 months or so, I have been slowly gathering information about crashes and their causes here in the state of Washington. I have consciously concentrated on those occuring in Central Washington. Extreme Eastern Washington is out of short driving range (2 hours) as is much of Western Washington.

Eastern/Central Washington was an Army Air Force training hub. There was Army Air Force activity at the following locations (others will doubtlessly follow, and I may eventually move this to an actual website, rather than a blog) Yakima County Airport, Ephrata Army Air Base (AAB), Moses Lake AAB, Walla Walla AAB, and Ellensburg Airport. Ellensburg still has taxiways that were made in the 1940s.

WWII gave way to a considerable military presence uring the Cold War. Nike Missile sites, Atlas E sites, Titan Missile sites, and a SAGE site. All of these in Central Washington.

There are numerous resources to help with the task of Washington State Air History, and at a later date, I hope to list some of these.

My name is Jim Huffman. I am a history teacher and aircraft buff. I volunteer at the local air museum and I have visited several of the air museums in the West.

For information, though my resources are at this time comparatively meager, please leave a comment and an e-mail address and I will respond.


Anonymous said...

Maybe you can help me.

In 1958 a US Army Beaver crashed about 8 miles north of Stehekin, at the head of Lake Chelan. The pilot, Capt Shankle and a US soldier who had hitched a ride, both died in the crash.

In the summer of 58 or 59, the US Army sent in a helicopter to collect the bodies. That was an H21 Vertol helicopter. It crashed. The Army sent in another. It crashed. This last one they managed to repair and fly out, but the other one as officially abandoned along with the Beaver.

In the summer of 60, as a 16 year old kid, I went with a salvage crew to repair and fly out the H21. The operation was successful and the H21 was flown out to Chelan, put on a railcar and shipped to Los Angeles.

I am looking for any information on the Beaver that went down.

I have photos of the operation and will be adding them to a blog I am sitting up.


Gene Whitmer

Anonymous said...

My email:


Jimh. said...

I will be looking into it later this week, I amy have recently gotten something that relates...