Green Peter Mountain, OR Private Plane Crash, Sep 1968


Sweethome, Ore. (UPI) -- The bodies of a California family of four were removed Monday night from the scattered wreckage of their plane near the 4,200-foot level of Green Peter Mountain.
The single engine plane crashed Saturday afternoon, apparently just four days after the pilot, JACK THOMAS, 50, of Fremont, Calif., earned his private license.
The dead, in addition to THOMAS, were his wife RUTH, 47, and their children, TOD, 14, and LESLIE, 9.
THOMAS' family was en route from Oakland, Calif., to Tacoma, Wash., when it reported icing conditions and a loss of altitude shortly after a fuel stop at Eugene. The plane then plunged into dense timber and scattered over 400 yards.
Nine planes, 12 land vehicles and several hundred persons participated in a search Sunday, but were hampered by low clouds. The wreckage was spotted by an Air Force helicopter early Monday afternoon.
Federal aviation officials who went to the scene said THOMAS' logbook indicated he earned his private license Sept. 1 and had logged just eight hours prior to the accident.

Press Courier Oxnard California 1968-09-17


Fed mashel badge ppk and holster.

Two yrs back a man was shooting on my range, he had a Walter PPK and black German mil. Holster also a 1934 .32 Bretta. He told me his dad had died and thay were removing things he had in the attack of his house, way back in the rafters he found a shoe box , in it were the above things and a gold fed . Marshals badge , he was a loan officer at a bank in Eugene oregon .he offered to sell me all or part of the box, I took the one breta and the holster. If you wish I think I can still find him. I will help if I can, Paul Ehrhardt.541-554-6143.


My father was a pilot before the war. He was Mr. Eisenhower's pilot. They were friends before the war. He taught me how to fly in an Allen Ercoupe in 1948.
We had a 58,000 acre farn that covered three townships. We had a Cessna 140; a 150; a 170; a 195; and of course the last one, his Navion. My father had over 12,000 logged hours and had the most four engine bomber time in the war. He claimed to have fought the war between California and Texas - flying troops back and forth in four engined bombers converted to transport the troops heading toward the Pacific Theater.
I think that someone may have gotten their information wrong - prior to you looking into this accident. It is a wonder how the information about only eight hors logged time. Perhaps it was the only amount of time logged in THAT logbook - I never got most of my dad's papers back.
As to the discovery of the wreckage by an Air Force helicopter - It was a private jet helicopter owned by a well-to-do Portland, Oregon businessman. He and his friend, a retired Air Force Major, often joined in searches and very often discover the wreck being searched for in a matter of hours as was the case here.
As an aside, did your research discover the District Attorney and the Grand Jury looking into charging four people with theft? They were discovered by myself and my brothers when we went to the wreck after we'd buried our family. They had completely dismantled the engine and removed the instruments and radio. We were of the opinion that they were part of the search team, as was I, and we also believe them to have robbed the bodies of the money and my father's Walther PBK. Furthermore, my brother Tod was wearing my Great Grandfather's Marshal Badge. It resembled a Texas Ranger type. Grandpa Reuben Kiney was a Marshal in Washington from the 1870's into the 1890's. Somebody has my badge that Grandma Kiney gave me in 1950.
As an added side-note, My Father's name is Jack Denney Thomas. His Great Grandfather is named Arthur Denney. He started a small town in the State of Washing in 1851. He called it Tacoma. In 1855 the settlerst that he and cousin Ezra Meeker had sold lots to, changed the name of Tacoma to Seattle. They called the small spit of land that he had originally stopped at, Denny's Island - as it is still called today. I'm really glad that you took your time to place this bit of information on the internet. I didn't know of it until today. My son Edward was looking up some family history information for his grandson - my Great Grandson, and had asked me about when his Grandpa Thomas was killed in the wreck. He called me back this afternoon and told me of his find.
Again, Mr. Beitler, thank you for your diligence.