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The Daily Need

Photo: Smoke from above

Smoke billows from the Empire State Building in New York, July 28, 1945, after an Army B-25 bomber en route to Newark Airport crashed into the upper floors of the structure. Fires were started on the top 11 floors of the building. Photo: AP

On this day in 1945, a U.S. Army B-25 Mitchell bomber en route to Newark Airport in New Jersey crashed into the upper floors of the Empire State Building. The plane was originally destined for LaGuardia Airport in New York City but was diverted because of heavy fog.

On a Saturday morning at 9:49 a.m., the low-flying 10-ton bomber flew into the north side of the building at the 79th floor, creating a hole in the building 18 feet wide and 20 feet high. Upon impact, the jet fuel exploded, sending flames through the interior of the building all the way down to the 75th floor. There were 11 people killed in the building plus three crewmen on the plane. The structural integrity of the building was not damaged.

Take a step back in time with this newsreel footage of the incident, complete with antiquated ethnic slurs, overly dramatic music and matter-of-fact commentary on the victims.

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