WNBQ Channel 5 - Flight 529 [Crash] (Part 1, 1961)

Views: 12954

0

This clip made possible by the donations from our generous group of "Fuzzketeers" during the Spring 2012 Tape Transfer Fundraiser.

Here's Part 1 of a special report on the crash of TWA Flight 529 on WNBQ Channel 5 (which became WMAQ Channel 5 on August 31st 1964), produced by NBC News Chicago. The anchor of this report is Charles McCuen. Also featuring Floyd Kalber and Jim Hurlbut. Includes:

Academy leader countdown (different from the SMPTE universal leader countdown on some other films that are on this site)

Opening titles with shots of the crash's aftermath

The voice of Charles McCuen leading off with the grim statistics (accompanied by film footage of bodies being carried from the site): All 78 on board (73 passengers and five crew members) killed, including a California family of seven (an engineer, his wife and their five children) that was completely wiped out; the third-worst disaster in American aviation history (up to that point) and the worst in Chicago (again, up to that point) (followed by what sounds like a dog howling in the background).

Charles, on camera, explaining the background: TWA Flight 529 was a four-engine Lockheed Constellation L-049 ("a tourist flight - lower fares, not so plush"), flying from Boston and headed for San Francisco, having made stops in New York and Pittsburgh before heading to Chicago. The crash occurred four minutes after takeoff at 2:00am west of Midway Airport where it took off from Runway 22, headed for Las Vegas on its way to its final destination. It crashed onto a muddy cornfield near southwest suburban Clarendon Hills, 11 miles from Midway. He cites eyewitness accounts of there being an explosion first before the plane hit the ground, while others insist the explosion came when the plane hit, but no one knew what caused the crash. Others thought an atomic bomb hit the area.

On the scene at the time was WNBQ's Bill Warrick (sp?) who lived in nearby Hinsdale and was awoken by his 7-year-old daughter who was scared by the sounds of sirens passing by; he presented the footage of the plane still on fire, which is shown as Charles describes the events that unfolded. Of the 78 killed, 20 were children; besides the family of seven described earlier, two other families of six also lost their lives, as well as a mother and her four children. Among the crew who were killed was stewardess Nanette "Nan" Fidger who intended to make one more flight before leaving the airline to get married. Shots of civil defense and aviation investigators at the crash site are shown.

The owner of the farm where the plane crashed was Jerry Broz who, with his wife, was interviewed at the scene by Floyd Kalber. Mrs. Broz says she saw the crash from her bedroom window, and explains how the plane went down from her vantage point; while Jerry explains how he saw and heard the whole thing, and his wife called the police and fire departments afterwards, and all he saw was dead bodies everywhere.

Back to Charles in the studio, who introduces an interview Jim Hurlbut conducted with eyewitness Laurie Seton (sp?) who lived three blocks from the crash scene. She explains that she and her husband were awake at the time and heard "an airplane in distress," with the engines revving up and the crew trying to put it back up in the air, and then she saw the explosion up close, followed by hearing the "concussion" that followed. She and her husband then called the fire department and went out to the scene, saw no signs of life, and wondered if one of the pieces was a fuselage or a wing. She brought blankets for any possible survivors, but they ended up not being used.

NOTE: Parts of this coverage may have originally aired in color (since NBC, which has always owned WNBQ / WMAQ, was a major exponent of color TV and its studios were billed as an "all-color" facility since 1956), but in any case this is presented here in black-and-white kinescope film form.

This aired on local Chicago TV on Friday, September 1st 1961.


Date Uploaded: 07/26/2012

Tags: WMAQ Channel 5   News   1950s & 1960s     




Share

Spring 2012 Tape Transfer Fundraiser.

Here's Part 1 of a special report on the crash of TWA Flight 529 on WNBQ Channel 5 (which became WMAQ Channel 5 on August 31st 1964), produced by NBC News Chicago. The anchor of this report is Charles McCuen. Also featuring Floyd Kalber and Jim Hurlbut. Includes:

Academy leader countdown (different from the SMPTE universal leader countdown on some other films that are on this site)

Opening titles with shots of the crash's aftermath

The voice of Charles McCuen leading off with the grim statistics (accompanied by film footage of bodies being carried from the site): All 78 on board (73 passengers and five crew members) killed, including a California family of seven (an engineer, his wife and their five children) that was completely wiped out; the third-worst disaster in American aviation history (up to that point) and the worst in Chicago (again, up to that point) (followed by what sounds like a dog howling in the background).

Charles, on camera, explaining the background: TWA Flight 529 was a four-engine Lockheed Constellation L-049 ("a tourist flight - lower fares, not so plush"), flying from Boston and headed for San Francisco, having made stops in New York and Pittsburgh before heading to Chicago. The crash occurred four minutes after takeoff at 2:00am west of Midway Airport where it took off from Runway 22, headed for Las Vegas on its way to its final destination. It crashed onto a muddy cornfield near southwest suburban Clarendon Hills, 11 miles from Midway. He cites eyewitness accounts of there being an explosion first before the plane hit the ground, while others insist the explosion came when the plane hit, but no one knew what caused the crash. Others thought an atomic bomb hit the area.

On the scene at the time was WNBQ's Bill Warrick (sp?) who lived in nearby Hinsdale and was awoken by his 7-year-old daughter who was scared by the sounds of sirens passing by; he presented the footage of the plane still on fire, which is shown as Charles describes the events that unfolded. Of the 78 killed, 20 were children; besides the family of seven described earlier, two other families of six also lost their lives, as well as a mother and her four children. Among the crew who were killed was stewardess Nanette "Nan" Fidger who intended to make one more flight before leaving the airline to get married. Shots of civil defense and aviation investigators at the crash site are shown.

The owner of the farm where the plane crashed was Jerry Broz who, with his wife, was interviewed at the scene by Floyd Kalber. Mrs. Broz says she saw the crash from her bedroom window, and explains how the plane went down from her vantage point; while Jerry explains how he saw and heard the whole thing, and his wife called the police and fire departments afterwards, and all he saw was dead bodies everywhere.

Back to Charles in the studio, who introduces an interview Jim Hurlbut conducted with eyewitness Laurie Seton (sp?) who lived three blocks from the crash scene. She explains that she and her husband were awake at the time and heard "an airplane in distress," with the engines revving up and the crew trying to put it back up in the air, and then she saw the explosion up close, followed by hearing the "concussion" that followed. She and her husband then called the fire department and went out to the scene, saw no signs of life, and wondered if one of the pieces was a fuselage or a wing. She brought blankets for any possible survivors, but they ended up not being used.

NOTE: Parts of this coverage may have originally aired in color (since NBC, which has always owned WNBQ / WMAQ, was a major exponent of color TV and its studios were billed as an "all-color" facility since 1956), but in any case this is presented here in black-and-white kinescope film form.

This aired on local Chicago TV on Friday, September 1st 1961." /> Share

Embed

Copy and paste this code into your website or blog.

Add To

You must login to add videos to your playlists.

Comments

0 Comments total

to post comments.

No comments have been posted for this video yet.