Mingus Mountain, AZ Private Plane Crash, July 1959


Prescott, Ariz. (UPI) -- A private plane on a holiday sight-seeing trip crashed into the side of a mountain, killing all six persons aboard -- four of them children.
The wreckage of the plane was spotted Sunday by an Air Force C-47 search craft near the top of 7009-foot Mingus Mountain about 20 miles from where it took off Saturday.
The children aboard were being treated to the flight as part of a birthday party for one of them. A rescue crew taken into the rugged area by Air Force helicopter confirmed that all were killed when the plane apparently flew straight into the side of the mountain.
RUSSELL POTTS, 33, head of a Phoenix Crop Dusting Service and veteran pilot, was at the controls of the Piper Tri-Pacer.
Also aboard the plane was MRS. ATLIE COATES, 24, of Blythe, Calif., and her son, WOODY, 3; and three children of the JACK DANIELS' of Prescott. They were PATRICK, 8, whose birthday was being celebrated, his brothers, JERRY, 11, and TOM, 13.
The plane was sighted at 11:33 a.m., p.d.t., ending an extensive search by Civial Air Patrol, private and Air Force craft. The plane took off late Saturday after the children had been water skiing on a nearby lake.
The children still were dressed in their bathing suits.
The plane took off and flew over the DANIELS' home here. The mother of the three boys said she saw them waving from the low-flying craft. The plane then vanished.
Officials said they could not determine what caused the crash. A FAA investigator was flown to the scene from Phoenix.
The bodies of the victims were returned to the Prescott Airport.

The Times Recorder Zanesville Ohio 1959-07-06

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