Saturday, March 2, 2013

Flight 427

It hardly seems possible that it was almost 19 years ago.

I was an employee of USAir at the time and the airline had its worst disaster ever.  On September 8, 1994, Flight 427 from Chicago to Pittsburgh literally fell out of the sky while on approach to the Pittsburgh airport.  All 132 people on board perished.  Later it was determined that a design flaw in the rudder actuator was the probable cause of the crash, and likely the cause of other Boeing 737 incidents.

The location shown here is Sewickley Cemetery, about eight miles from the actual crash but the most logical place for the memorial since the site itself is private property.

It's a very peaceful place to reflect on what happened all those years ago and the souls that were lost.  I knew a number of the people on the flight as they were fellow employees.  Their names along with their fellow passengers and crew are immortalized there at the cemetery.

Having been through that sickening feeling, of empathy but helplessness, I can tell you it is not something you ever want to go through.  Still, visiting the memorial invites a sense of closure and peace.  Yes, even 19 years later it invites introspection and remembrance of a gut-wrenching time.

This part of the memorial stands in front of the main part, above.  I had to brush the March snow off the stone for it to be legible.

The location is off by itself to the right of the main cemetery, but instantly visible and inviting.  You will know it as soon as it appears in the distance.

It's a place of sacred reflection and one of peace.


1 comment:

Debra She Who Seeks said...

It's good that these people have not been forgotten and that they are memorialized and missed.