The experienced flight crew was distracted when the landing gear light failed to come on, which they believed was caused by a blown bulb. Infantino and other survivors have for years tried to create one but have been unable to raise the money needed to build it. He had bad sawgrass cuts all over his face. Contact us: Unfortunately, 101 passengers and crew perished in the accident. They didn't find her body until two days later," he said. No, we didnt crash, Beverly. Five years ago, Raposa revived the idea and got approval to place it on a plot of public land in Miami Springs. I have a beautiful family, and I got my wings back, and I just keep moving forward, said McQuigg. Eastern Airlines Flight 401 was on its way from New York to Miami on December 29th, 1972, with 13 crew and 163 passengers onboard. . That memory never goes away, he told the Miami Herald 50 years later. And he said the disaster taught him something about life. He was flying from New York that night with his bride of 20 days, Lilly. Afterward, folks hope to take the old man into the . Eastern Airlines Flight 401 was one of South Florida's deadliest airline disasters. Promote your organization with Miami's #1 hyperlocal community website. What none of the passengers in the plane knew was that the light for the nose gear wasn't working. Now, survivors are planning the first memorial marker. This week, there will be a special commemoration of the new monument on Curtiss Parkway in memory of the 101 souls lost fifty years ago on Eastern Airlines Flight 401. It was all wet, but it felt good just to have something on me.". Beverly attended to the injured and calmed any survivors she found. The crash of Eastern Airlines Flight 401, along with other major air disasters around the same time, eventually led to a number of aircraft safety enhancements, including crew resource management, which has procedures for decision making in cockpits to try to eliminate human error. Raposa was among 75 "miracle survivors." Another 101 died. By the time they did, it was already too late to recover. Raposa, who now lives in Broward County, studied to become a flight attendant just steps away from the memorial site. The answer was fine, but unfortunately the controller didn't specifically mention the altitude so no one was the wiser. Chapter 4 - Flight 401 Passenger List. Its just special to me that we are remembering all the people who lost their lives, Quinn said. "I remember hitting, I woke up and I was in a sitting position water up to my chin, no clothes on, everything was stripped right off me except the rims of my socks," said Infantino. Infantino served in Vietnam, but it was this flight, not war that brought him closest to death. Today Infantino will present two wreaths, one for Flight 401 and the other for Valujet, the 1996 Everglades crash that killed all 110 on board. There was no fear, no panic, no anything. Flight attendants Mercedes Ruiz and Patricia McQuigg were working at the rear of the aircraft. The crash killed 101 people, including Stanich. "I'll be reading names," he said, "and after each name a candle will be lit until 101 candles are lit.". Shortly before the scheduled landing at about 11:30 that night, Lilly went to the restroom and when she came back they switched seats. I reach over and all the sudden my fingers go inside of my bicep," he said. Survivors: 10: Eastern Air Lines Flight 212 was a controlled flight into terrain accident of a McDonnell Douglas DC-9 during approach to Charlotte Douglas International Airport in North Carolina. and they said, 'I'm sorry, sir, we don't know.'". One minute, he was resting in his seat with his arms folded. Tomorrow is not a given, she said. Survivors will unveil a memorial marker on a grassy median of Curtiss Parkway in Miami Springs, across from the country club, on Dec. 29, the anniversary of the crash. Eastern Air Lines Flight 401 was on its final approach into Miami shortly before midnight 50 years ago this month when a single light bulb on the aircraft's instrument panel failed to illuminate. Sharon Shackleford said it has been painful to go on without her sister but that the memorial brings her peace. And because it was pitch dark there were no visual cues outside to tell them they were about to hit the swamp. "Survivors" Southern . There were 67 survivors. Dawn Quinn, 59, the granddaughter of flight 401 Captain Robert A. Loft, said she was 9 years old when she heard that her grandfathers plane had crashed. On another day, a crew was in the cockpit of an aircraft when they were said to have seen Don sitting with them. Eastern Air Lines Flight 401, 50 Years On, Aviation journalist and Daily Caller contributor who counts playing and teaching golf among his many hobbies, follow him on Twitter @realBrentFoster. The Story Of Eastern Air Lines Flight 401. There has not been one day in the last 50 years that they havent been in my heart and that I havent wanted to make sure that I kept my promise to them. "I said, 'Please don't leave me here alone, I'm so cold,'" he remembers pleading with her. READ MORE: Eastern Flight 401 introduced new safety measures and books, movies and ghost stories. The four-month-old L-1011 TriStar jet crashed into the Florida . . I just regret not getting a chance to say goodbye. . Ruiz said that the NTSB interviewed herself and other surviving crew members as part of the official accident report, each of whom agreed that flashlights represented one item they wished they possessed on the night of the crash. She came back and said, Mercy, I cant. She couldnt see.. When an air traffic controller at MIA noticed they were flying at 900 feet when they should have been at 2000, he contacted the cockpit and asked, "How are things coming along out there?" Infantino, then 26, awoke bobbing in the swamp, unable to move with an injured arm, chest and knee. "It was almost five hours before they even found me, five hours in the same spot, the same spot, I couldn't move, I couldn't get up," he said. The aircraft was a five-year-old McDonnell Douglas DC-9-31 registered as N8984E. 401 JFK-MIA Dec. 29, 1972. Eastern Airlines eventually ceased operations early in 1991. It was time to leave as each of us will do. When the flight crew on Eastern Air Lines 401 noticed a possible issue with their aircraft, they immediately went into troubleshooting mode to ensure the problem could be fixed. The crash of Eastern Flight 401. Wow, what an experience that was. Featured Image: Eastern Airlines Lockheed L1011 N310EA, the airframe involved in flight 401. "I don't know where she was. "The NTSB, when they studied it, they said this crash was unsurvivable, yet 75 miracles came out of there.". Infantino heard that, but nobody could hear him. Flight 401, a new L-1011 TriStar, took off from Kennedy International Airport in New York at 9:20 p.m. on Dec. 29, 1972. Eastern Airlines Flight 401 was one of South Floridas deadliest airline disasters. The crash claimed the lives of 101 passengers and crew. She came across a woman who found an 11-month-old baby as she scouted the wreckage for her son. The flight, which departed from JFK International . For example, the vice president of Eastern Air Lines once boarded a flight from New York and chatted with a pilot, who he assumed was in charge of that sector. Days later, the wreckage of the aircraft was retrieved from the swamp, and some of its parts were able to be salvaged, including a galley. Survivors now have a message, It gives me and my fellow surviving passengers, crew members and family members of loved ones who perished a time to all come together and remember them since we never had a chance to say goodbye, Raposa said. The crash was a result of the flight crew's failure to recognize a deactivation of the autopilot during their attempt . She found Beverly and commented 'it's a bad dream, we are going to wake up.' Copyright 2023 is published by WPLG INC., a Berkshire Hathaway company. Former flight attendant Beverly Raposa, one of 75 people who survived after the plane crashed with 176 people on board, said that she has never forgotten the passengers and crew members who died. His knee was badly dislocated, his shin able to swivel in any direction. They had not realized that the autopilot was disconnected, which ultimately caused the plane to lose altitude and crash. Then came the final and fatal mistake. I number things from 1 to 10, and 10 [is] a plane crash, he said. Eastern Flight 401: A survivor's story. Eastern Air Lines Flight 401: 28 May 2008 () On 29 December 1972, Eastern Air Lines Flight 401 is on a flight to Miami International Airport. Why? Infantino and the flight attendants will meet with airline experts and the public to tell them never to become complacent. Controllers gave their OK and told the crew to maintain an altitude of 2,000 feet, as the plane, which had been over the airport turned back over the Everglades. There were 75 survivors, including a 23-year-old flight . The captain had ordered that the landing gear be lowered in preparation for landing. Sign up for NBC South Florida newsletters. Then he noticed that the pilot did a fly-by the airport. The video below recounts the moment by moment incident that led to the crash as well as interviews with some of the survivors and witnesses. It is open to the public. Patricia has a master's level postgraduate diploma in Human Factors in Aviation and has written about aviation since 2010. The death toll was, in 1972, the highest of any one-plane accident. A well-known fatal accident recounted from surviving cabin crew. Shortly after, the plane crashed into the swamp. She asked the flight engineer later about the oven, and he said he hadn't fixed it, and it didn't need to be fixed. It also marked the first the first jumbo jet to crash. He would later learn the voice came from flight attendant Beverly Raposa, who would later lead survivors in Christmas carols to try to keep their spirits up in the cold night. Nichole Shackleford, 53, was just 3 years old when she lost her mother, passenger Patricia Renee Shackleford, 20, in the crash. "Same thing in our lives. She encouraged them to sing Christmas carols . From the 1972 crash of Eastern Air Lines Flight 401 in the Florida Everglades, to the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 and the tragedies of Lion Air Flight 610 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 resulting from faulty sensors on the Boeing 737 Max 8, Podhurst Orseck has grown from aviation litigation pioneer to the premier firm of its kind globally. Now the names are there and they will never be forgotten, Ruiz said. He did not survive, but his memory lives on. Patricia commented on the fact that it was the holiday season and maybe they'd earn some overtime. "It banked to the left and those engines roared to take off power and we hit. Three of the 4 cockpit crew members, two of the 10 flight attendants, and 96 of the 163 passengers were killed; there were 75 survivors. The airline still wanted to interview him for an opening that he could start after his health improved. Patricia McQuigg, Beverly Raposa, and Mercy Ruiz joined Infantino this week at a program to teach airline experts and passengers the lessons learned from a dark night in the Everglades. He has a masters degree in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin and a bachelors degree in education from the Universidad de Puerto Rico en Ro Piedras. asked Loft. She said it was ironic that he died in one of his favorite places in the world the Everglades. Josef El Rey Martinez was officially introduced as the newest member of Inter Miami on Wednesday morning, but the Venezuelan forward and former MLS MVP is hardly a newcomer to South Florida. He read a poem in her honor from her perspective as if she were speaking to him from the heavens above. From this accident, crew resource management was brought into pilot and cabin crew training to improve communication onboard. Today's story is one of tragedy, of course, but it's also one of heroism and bravery. But now, they still have to survive in the vast darkness of the gator infested Everglades. A desperate search and rescue effort began almost immediately. The flight path of Eastern Airlines Flight 401 in its final moments. Eastern Airlines Flight 401. Were gonna wake up.. Were talking about 75 people who have varying degrees of injuries and now have to navigate an airplane wreckage in the alligator infested swamp. She said her mom had moved to Connecticut and was coming home to surprise her family before New Years. She went on to praise the efforts of Raposa, who sang Christmas carols to maintain morale among survivors as they waited for rescue. The other flight crew members were First Officer John Stockhill, a flight engineer, and Donald Luis Repo, an aircraft mechanic, and flight engineer. ", - Beverly, Flight attendant on Flight 401. Raposa was one of 75 survivors. Forty-five years ago, when Officer Gray Leonhard of the Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission began a solo night patrol in the Everglades, he was on the lookout for poachers, drug smugglers and maybe even a bullet-riddled corpse. And those survivors were in the pitch black darkness of the Everglades. In one of South Florida's worst air disasters, Eastern Airlines Flight 401 from New York's JFK Airport to Miami crashed on Dec. 29, 1972, in the Everglades after the crew became distracted by a burned out landing-gear light. Beverly vowed to make a permanent memorial to those who were killed. 2023 Endeavor Business Media, LLC. Bud Marquis raced to the scene to assist survivors and he used his head-mounted light to signal the first U. S. Coast Guard HH-52A as to where . Ruiz also described the anniversary as an opportunity to reflect on the lives lost in the crash. "I got a call from a mother whose son was killed on Valujet 592 and she said how much she appreciates us having a wreath for them," said Infantino, choking up. The swamp water that may have saved him also caused him to get gangrene, causing it to swell to three times its normal size and smell "like rotten eggs." I try to do that but I'm human so it doesn't always work out.". The granite marker, engraved with the names of the people who perished, will stand in a median near the Miami Springs Country Club for future generations to see. This message board is intended for serious discussions of the December 29th, 1972 crash of Eastern Airlines Flight 401. Bud Marquis, who was out hunting frogs with a friend, was the first to arrive and found a scene of chaos, with survivors struggling in the swampy wreckage. . Donations are still being accepted no matter what amount. On the night of December 29th, 1972, he was a passenger on Eastern Airlines Flight 401 from New York to Miami. Local 10: Eastern Flight 401: A survivor's story; Flamingo Magazine: Flight 401 Down in the Glades; Read the Story! "We now dedicate this memorial to the 101 souls who perished that night. Eastern Air Lines flight 401 encountered no problems while cruising between the two cities. "Ah, tower this is Eastern, ah, four zero one, it looks like we're gonna have to circle, we don't have a light on our nose gear yet," the pilot told the control tower at MIA. Advertise: Call 305.775.4094 or email: Now you can see the construction of the new pool with your own eyes. He warned them of a faulty electrical circuit, which was then found and replaced. But that turned out to be Infantinos uncle, who wasnt on the plane. The left wing tip hit first. The aircraft operating the route, a Lockheed L1011-385-1 Tristar crashed into the Florida Everglades, resulting in 101 fatalities. That time, finances got in the way. It happened 40 years ago today on a cold dark night in the Everglades, a brand new "Whisperliner" jumbo jet crashed in the swamp, killing 101. The plane plunged into the Everglades after taking off from the Miami airport. READ MORE: An Eastern plane crashed into the Everglades in 1972. The couple was returning to Miami from their honeymoon when the unspeakable happened. It was a picture no one was supposed to see, and instead, it has been all over the world, known for being taken right before the disaster. While in the cockpit one day, preparing for the flight, another pilot heard loud knocks from under the floor beneath him. She heard the cries of people and shouted, 'Follow my voice, I am a flight attendant' so that any surviving passengers could find her. Writer - Patricia joins Simple Flying with over 20 years of experience in aviation. The jet carried 167 passengers to Miami from New York. Please review this photograph closely. Looking back, Ruiz, now 78, who worked at Eastern until the company stopped flying in 1991, sees signs in the events of Dec. 29, 1972. "The tail turned over, the floor opened under me and I went down with 400 pounds of debris on me," she said. "I love my profession so I overcame that part of my life. The list of passengers who perished on Eastern Airlines flight EA401 and honored on the Memorial are: The list of pilots who perished on Eastern Airlines flight EA401 are: The flight attendants who perished on the flight are: Fortunately, there were 75 survivors during that horrible tragedy of late 1972. With William Shatner, Adrienne Barbeau, Brooke Bundy, Christopher Connelly. "Next thing I knew, we hit the left wing tip first, everything out of the overheads flew over. The lights of Miami vanished behind them. Raposa explained that over many years, we worked, trying to put something together, emphasizing the development of a tribute for Flight 401. Amazingly, 75 of the 176 passengers and crew aboard Flight 401 survived. He had 8,876 flight hours, including 3,856 hours on the DC-9. Both pilots and the flight engineer died, along with 2 out of 10 flight attendants and 96 of the 163 passengers on board. She has served as cabin crew on flights from economy-class to private jets. 2022 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The pilot Bob Loft and the flight engineer Don Repo were two of the 101 people who perished in the air crash. "We did something to the altitude," he said. If you have a story you'd like to share with the Miami Springs audience or would like to advertise on, please contact Mr. Suarez at: You have entered an incorrect email address! A short time later, the plane was cleared to turn back to MIA and that's when a crewmember noticed something was amiss. Her mothers sister, Sharon Shackleford, 73, and best friend, Angel Sears, 70, were also in attendance. But doctors were able to reattach his arm. MIAMI - Thursday marks 50 years since Eastern Airlines Flight 401 crashed into the Florida Everglades. The other 101 people on Eastern Airlines Flight 401 died quite horribly 98 in the Everglades where the airplane crashed, three later in hospitals. Those were the last words recovered from the flight voice recorder. I put the sweater around me under the water. Eastern Airlines Flight 401 crashed into the Everglades on a moonless night on December 29, 1972. Discover more of our stories here! The group will also try to raise funds for a memorial to honor those who died. Dawn Quinn's grandfather was pilot Robert Loft. If were a little late, its overtime.. Aviation consultant Bennie Benitez said there were many positive safety elements that came out of 401, like flash lights on all planes. "My god, you're here, please don't leave me," he remembers telling them. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC. The Story Of Eastern Air Lines Flight 401, took a look at the eight most intriguing examples. The flight crew had not realized that the autopilot had been accidentally switched off and the aircraft was descending. "On the wreath I put, 'To our fellow brothers and sisters, in loving memory.' The plane then veered to the left and was thrown into darkness. 101 out of the 176 occupants onboard the aircraft perished. The 75-year-old woman, who was 25 at the time, was given a standing ovation for spearheading the efforts to build the memorial, located on the grassy median of the Curtiss Parkway and across from the Miami Springs Golf and Country Club. They were exhausted. ", "We're still at two thousand right?" We're trying to build a memorial out there to try to honor that not only the survivals but the ones who died, ron "It went completely dark so I knew we were doing another go-round, not knowing what was going on," he said. Raposa emphasized that she feels safer up there. Raposa concluded that 50 years beyond the crash, survivors and supporters still carry the victims of Flight 401 in their hearts. "We did something to the altitude," the first officer remarked, and the captain's reply was "What? Theres another photo Ruiz has analyzed over the years. The disaster took the lives While making preparations to land, the crew are distracted by a faulty landing gear indicator light and accidentally disengage the autopilot while trying to resolve the problem. Infantino and other survivors are holding a memorial service today at 4 p.m. at the site of the Valujet Flight 592 memorial, on the Tamiami Trail, 12 miles west of Krome Avenue. It happened 40 years ago today on a cold dark night in the Everglades, a brand new "Whisperliner" jumbo jet . But today, for Infantino, is about Lilly and the other lost lives. The name of Ronald Infantino's wife Lily is on that memorial. The flight had left JFK Airport in New York en-route to Miami International Airport when it went down shortly before midnight on Dec. 29, 1972, in the swampland some 18 miles west-northwest of the airport. The appearance of the dead flight engineer () was confirmed by the flight engineer." Multiple Emmy award winning journalist Ted Scouten has been the familiar face at the scene of international stories that have affected South Florida since 1998. Then I knew how bad I was.". Beverly Raposa was a bubbly, 25-year-old flight attendant onboard Eastern Airlines Flight 401 from New York to Miami when the plane slammed into the Everglades at 225 miles per hour near midnight . Ann Connell, Barry Connell, Angelo Donadeo, Patricia R Georgia, Adrianne Ann Hamilton, Jennifer Larsen, Thomas Mulcahy, Mercedes V Ruiz, Beverly Jean Raposa, Trudy J Smith, Sue F. Tibbs, Sharon R Transue, Dorothy M Warnock. Beverly remembers when the flight went down. We reach over 20,000 people each month. He was so weak that doctors opted to operate without anesthesia. Eastern Airlines Flight 401 - Crash Investigation, Findings and Passenger List . Ron Infantino is a passenger who survived the tragedy. Total construction cost: $5 MILLION. One hundred and one lives were lost that late December evening, with 75 passengers and crew . Gli episodi del programma televisivo documentaristico canadese Indagini ad alta quota (Mayday) sono stati trasmessi sul network Discovery Channel Canada dal 3 settembre 2003.A marzo 2018 sono stati prodotti e trasmessi in lingua originale 156 episodi (suddivisi in 18 stagioni), inclusi cinque speciali Science of Disaster in cui sono trattati pi incidenti (stagioni 6 e 8) e tre spin-off Crash . . Beverly Raposa a survior of Eastern Flight 401 29th December 1972 crash of an L-1011, tail number N310EA explains her experience There were also reports of Bob having been seen doing his pre-flight checks of the aircraft and telling the ground staff he'd already completed them. The couple had two sons. Please enter valid email address to continue. People were screaming, and partially clothed dead bodies were face down in the water. Patricia has a master's level postgraduate diploma in Human Factors in Aviation and has written about aviation since 2010. "We're still at 2,000 feet, right?" She was dazed and disoriented but noticed a penlight flashing nearby. Nonetheless, at one point, efforts appeared to come to a standstill until the beginning of 2022, when Raposa, in a conference call, emphasized a desire for action ahead of the 50th anniversary. Later, he recognized that the pilot he'd been speaking to was, in fact, Bob. "I asked, 'Where's my wife?' Less pool space. Miami, Florida: Bankrupt Eastern Airlines Jets On The Ground. There were 75 at the time, 20 years ago tonight. Fortunately, there were 75 survivors during that horrible tragedy of late 1972. "Brand new, spacious, the seating was gorgeous, there was a beautiful lounge in the back.". Flight Capt. After the wreckage is removed, salvageable parts from the plane are used to repair other aircraft.