Beaver Tails master index

 previous  next click on arrows to navigate page by page.

56-4398 at Fort Jay, New York.
Photo: Unknown photographer © 1957 - Aird Archives




56-4398 US Army #1681. L-20 No. 682. Command A-12. Delivered 10-May-1957. Built as L-20A..

Accident: Chittenden, Vermont. 02 Oct 1957. The single engine Beaver took off from Governor’s Island, New York en route to Vermont on a military inspection tour with the pilot CPT Eual A. Cathey and three Army officers on board. The pilot was fully briefed and acknowledged his clearance under Visual Flight Rules.  The forecast called for the ceiling to be well above minimums. However, according to the official Army findings released three months later, “This forecast did not materialize; the pilot encountered weather much worse than he could have anticipated, and inadvertently entered actual instrument flight, for which he was not qualified.”  In bad weather, the plane crashed into trees on Bloodroot Mountain (3,481ft) near Brandon, Vermont, overturning and being consumed by fire in which the pilot and two of the occupants were killed.

Miscommunications, which subsequently caused controversy between military and civilian parties involved, delayed the search for the aircraft, which was finally reached on 12th October. The third passenger appears to have been thrown well clear of the crash site and whilst he suffered non life threatening injuries had died of exposure and de hydration before he could be rescued.

Presumed destroyed by fire