Investigations

Empire State Building Plane Crash Piece

The Case:

On Saturday, July 28, 1945, fog obscured the Empire State Building.  Moments after a warning from air traffic control, Lt. Col. Bill Smith crashed his B-25 Bomber into the 78th and 79th floors of the skyscraper, killing 14 people and igniting fires.

Contributor Irv Atkins says his father Louis came home from work the Monday after the crash with a piece of twisted metal he says was sitting in his office amid his broken windows.  Even though his office was south of the crash site, and the plane smashed into the north side, the Atkins family has always believed this was a piece of the B-25 bomber that flew into the Empire State Building.

Irv Atkins asks History Detectives host Eduardo Pagán, if he can, to give this piece of metal its proper place in history.


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Aired:
Season 10, Episode 3

Detective:
Eduardo Pagán Location:
New York City, New York and Borrego Springs and San Diego, California

More Information

US National Public Radio (Radio Diaries) segment on the crash. 
www.radiodiaries.org/the-plane-that-flew-into-the-empire-state-building

Carl Scholl - Aero Trader
www.aerotrader.net

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