77 years ago on May 20th, 1946
A twin-engine military plane crashes into 40 Wall Street, killing all on board
The Beechcraft C-45F Expeditor had been flying from Louisiana, but the pilots became disoriented in heavy fog, passing by their destination of Newark airport and impacting the northeast corner of the 58th floor of one of Lower Manhattan's tallest skyscrapers just after 8pm. Although the crash killed all five military personnel on the plane, no one in the building was injured and a wider section of the building at the 12th floor below the crash caught most of the debris, preventing it from crashing to the ground. In film footage after the crash, pieces of the landing gear can be seen on Pine Street, on the north side of the building.
The crash came just 10 months after a U.S. Army B-25 bomber had hit the Empire State Building at the 78th floor, also due to heavy fog.
Killed in the crash at 40 Wall Street were Major Mansel R. Campbell of Pontiac, Michigan, Captain Tom L. Hall of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, First Lieutenant Robert L. Stevenson of the Bronx, First Lieutenant Angelo A. Ross of Whitehall, NY, and First Lieutenant Mary E. Bond of Newtown, PA. View the New York Times story from 1946