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Criminal Occurrence description
Last updated: 23 October 2017
Status:
Date:Tuesday 1 November 1955
Time:19:03 MST
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC6 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas DC-6B
Operator:United Airlines
Registration: N37559
C/n / msn: 43538/224
First flight: 1952
Engines: 4 Pratt & Whitney R-2800
Crew:Fatalities: 5 / Occupants: 5
Passengers:Fatalities: 39 / Occupants: 39
Total:Fatalities: 44 / Occupants: 44
Airplane damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:Longmont, CO (   United States of America)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Denver-Stapleton International Airport, CO (DEN/KDEN), United States of America
Destination airport:Portland International Airport, OR (PDX/KPDX), United States of America
Flightnumber:UA629
Narrative:
Crashed following the in-flight detonation of a bomb.

On November 14, 1955, agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) took into custody John G. Graham, the son of one of the passengers. Thereafter, he was indicted for acts leading to the destruction of the aircraft by means of a bomb explosion.
Graham, who held a grudge against his mother as the result of an unhappy childhood, was the beneficiary of both her life insurance policies and her will. He wrapped dynamite sticks as a Christmas present.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The disintegrating force of a dynamite bomb explosion which occurred in the no. 4 baggage compartment."

Classification:
Sabotage
Loss of control

Sources:
» ICAO Accident Digest Circular 50-AN/45 (201-203)


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Map
This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Denver-Stapleton International Airport, CO to Portland International Airport, OR as the crow flies is 1570 km (981 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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Douglas DC-6

  • 704 built
  • 26th loss
  • 20th fatal accident
  • 8th worst accident (at the time)
  • 21st worst accident (currently)
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 United States of America
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  • 70th worst accident (currently)
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