S2F Crash
16 July 1958

On Wednesday 16 July 1958 a S2-F crashed at 11:13 AM. The pilots were LT. Donald Leroy Southworth (buried in Boulder, CO) who was "checking out" LCDR Alan Radford Dale (buried in Denver, CO). John B. Harris AC3 one of only two CAA licensed air controllers at Grosse Ile was on duty in the tower while the plane received its touch and go clearance at 11:11.  It is believed that AG2 Orin Gahlau gave them their weather briefing and signed their local flight plan. Shortly after what would be the final touch and go the S2 went in behind the white house (later painted yellow) just outside of Gate #2 (rear gate) on Groh Road where HM1 Jack Mc Creary lived at the time. There was a reported roar of take off on what would be the last touch and go, silence, then a mighty impact. 

ADC Consigleo conducted the investigation and he found the master on the magneto pulled out. The body of one pilot was across and sort of in front of the other as though reaching for it according to the report. After a extensive investigation the official cause was a broken elevator push rod.


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Revised: June 30, 2010