Mineola, Long Island, NY Martin Bomber Crashes, Sep 1922



Mineola, L. I., Sept. 23 -- Six persons in a Martin bomb plane were killed here tonight when the aeroplane struck the ground at the end of a nose dive.
The machine contained a pilot and five passengers. The accident came as a climax of the flying circus here. The pilot of the machine was First Lieutenant RAYMOND E. DAVIS, of the regular army.
The machine burst into flames when it struck the ground.
Lieut. DAVIS, with the big twin motor bomber, the heaviest machine here, had paraticipated with the attacking forces in a night air raid over the theoretical fortifications. The attack was made with dynamite bombs and was successful. The theoretical fortifications were demolished.
At the conclusion of the maneuvers, before a gallery of 25,000 persons and including many motion picture operators, the flyers engaged in a flying circus, lighted by the huge searchlights. After this, a number of planes took up passengers selected principally from among the 500 reserve officers of the second corps area, for whose benefit the war problem was being worked out.
Lieut. DAVIS took up five passengers in his big machine. While some distance up, the machine went into a nose dive out of which DAVIS apparently was unable to pull it. The machine struck the ground with both motors wide open. Instantly it burst into flames.
After the crash all sources of information were stopped by order of Major WEAVER, commandant at Mitchell field, pending an investigation and the ascertaining of the names of the victims.
All Were "Army Men"
All of the passengers, according to the Garden City police were "army men." It was not known how many if any were reserve officers and how many were regular army officers. It is presumed that at least one of the six was an enlisted man serving as a mechanician.
The occupants of the plane, besides Lieut DAVIS, U.S.A. were First Sergeant THOMAS BENFIELD of the Sixth air park, Mineola; Corporal DAVID H. STIVIN, Private HENRY RAY NICHOLS, Private IRVING M. WHITNEY and Private EDWARD H. KANE. They were all stationed at Mitchell field.

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