Southern Airways Flight 932

Southern Airways Flight 932
Southern Airways DC-9 (6146173132).jpg
A Southern Airways Douglas DC-9 similar to the aircraft involved in the accident
Accident summary
Date November 14, 1970
Summary Controlled flight into terrain (CFIT)
Site Wayne County, near Ceredo, West Virginia, United States
38°22′27″N 82°34′42″W / 38°22′27″N 82°34′42″W / 38.37417; -82.57833
Passengers 70
Crew 5
Fatalities 75 (all)
Survivors 0
Aircraft type Douglas DC-9-31
Operator Southern Airways
Registration N97S
Flight origin Kinston Regional Jetport
Destination Tri-State Airport

Southern Airways Flight 932 was a chartered Southern Airways Douglas DC-9 domestic United States commercial jet flight from Stallings Field (ISO) in Kinston, North Carolina, to Huntington Tri-State Airport/Milton J. Ferguson Field (HTS) in Ceredo, West Virginia. At 7:36 p.m. on November 14, 1970, the aircraft crashed into a hill just short of the Tri-State Airport, killing all 75 people on board. [1]

The plane was carrying 37 members of the Marshall University Thundering Herd football team, eight members of the coaching staff, 25 boosters, and five flight crew members. [2] The team was returning home after a 17–14 loss to the East Carolina Pirates at Ficklen Stadium in Greenville, North Carolina. [3]

At the time, Marshall's athletic teams rarely traveled by plane, since most away games were within easy driving distance of the campus. The team originally planned to cancel the flight, but changed plans and chartered the Southern Airways DC-9. [4] The accident is the deadliest tragedy affecting any sports team in U.S. history. [5]

Aircraft

The aircraft was a 95-seat, twin jet engine Douglas DC-9-30 with tail registration N97S. The airliner's crew was Captain Frank H. Abbot, 47; First Officer Jerry Smith, 28; flight attendants Pat Vaught and Charlene Poat. All were qualified for the flight. Another employee of Southern Airways, Danny Deese, was aboard the flight to coordinate charter activities. This flight was the only flight that year for the Marshall University football team. [1]