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MEMORIAL '70

History of Memorial '70

In an annual ceremony of remembrance, a wreath is placed at Wichita State's Memorial '70 at 9 a.m. each October 2. The brief ceremony honors WSU football players, administrators and supporters who died in a plane crash Friday, October 2, 1970.

In one of the worst tragedies of college sports history, a plane carrying WSU football players, athletic staff members and team boosters crashed at approximately 3 p.m. on a mountain near Silver Plume, Colorado while enroute to Logan, Utah for a game with Utah State University.

The "Gold" plane, a Martin 404, carried 36 passengers and a crew of four. Twenty-nine persons died at the scene. Trainer Tom Reeves and player John Taylor died later after receiving medical attention for their injuries.

Survivors of the crash were players Mike Bruce, John Hoheisel, Randy Jackson, Glenn Kostal, Dave Lewis, Keith Morrison, Bob Renner, Rick Stephens and co-pilot Ronald Skipper.

Football players and coaches on the "Black" plane were told of the crash by Bob Seaman, assistant coach, shortly after arrival in Logan, Utah. The game with Utah State was cancelled. WSU players spent the night in Logan and returned to Wichita by commercial plane Saturday.

A plane was made available by Governor Docking to take university officials and family of the survivors to Denver. Classes were cancelled Monday, October 5, and a memorial service was held Monday evening at Cessna Stadium.

The Utah State football team held a brief memorial service at the stadium where the game was to be played Saturday and placed a black and yellow wreath on the 50-yard line.

The future of the 1970 football season was in doubt, with the decision lying in the hands of the football players, university officials and eligibility rules. The NCAA had no objection of using freshman in the remaining games; neither did the Missouri Valley Conference.

The football players decided to continue the season, which was later designated as the "Second Season." The first game following the air tragedy was Saturday, October 24 with the University of Arkansas Razorbacks in Little Rock at the War Memorial Stadium. The first home game was WSU's homecoming on October 31 against the University of Cincinnati at Cessna Stadium.


In Memory of...

 

Marvin G. Brown, Jr.

Marvin G. Brown, Jr.

Donald E. Christian

Donald E. Christian

John W. Duren

John W. Duren

Ronald G. Johnson

Ronald G. Johnson

Randall B. Kiesau

Randall B. Kiesau

Malory W. Kimmel

Malory W. Kimmel

Carl R. Krueger

Carl R. Krueger

Stephan A. Moore

Stephan A. Moore

Thomas B. Owen, Jr.

Thomas B. Owen, Jr.

Eugene Robinson

Eugene Robinson

Thomas T. Shedden

Thomas T. Shedden

Richard N. Stines

Richard N. Stines

John R. Taylor

John R. Taylor

Jack R. Vetter

Jack R. Vetter

Carl G. Fahrbach

Carl G. Fahrbach
Dean of Admissions

Floyd W. Farmer

Floyd W. Farmer
Ticket Manager

Martin E. Harrison

Martin E. Harrison
Equipment Manager

Thomas A. Reeves

Thomas A. Reeves
Athletic Trainer

Ramon P. Coleman

Ramon P. Coleman
Shocker Club Chairman

Maxine Coleman


Maxine Coleman

 

John W. Grooms

John W. Grooms
Shocker Club Member

Etta Mae Grooms


Etta Mae Grooms

 

Albert Katzenmeyer

Albert Katzenmeyer
Athletic Director

Marion Katzenmeyer

Marion Katzenmeyer

Raymond E. King

Raymond E. King
State Representative

Yvonne King

Yvonne King

Ben Wilson

Ben Wilson
Head Coach

Helen Wilson

Helen Wilson

Judy Lane

Judy Lane
Flight Attendant

   

 

Not pictured: Dan Crocker and Judy Dunn