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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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History for Chron

Nov. 14, 2022 Updated Mon., Nov. 14, 2022 at 4:58 p.m.

Two crew members somehow escaped the catastrophic crash of a U.S. Air Force B-29 Superfortress that slammed into Mount Spokane.

The search was underway for one of the seven-man crew of the bomber that clipped the tops off several trees before it crashed in flames near the main road up the mountain.

Four of the crew were confirmed dead while the search continued for the fifth airman, who was believed to have died.

Tech Sgt. Marshall F. Fine, of San Jose, California, and Sgt. Truman W. Haley, of Chadron, Nebraska, survived the crash.

Fine and Haley told military officials they weren’t sure how they escaped the exploding wreckage.

Three Spokane County Sheriff’s deputies, Dave Keppel, M.P. Mitchell and Robert Browning, suffered burn injuries when leftover fuel on the airplane exploded as they approached.

John Linder, associate superintendent of the park, was plowing the main road on Mount Spokane when the bomber crashed.

“We had just passed the spot when the crash occurred,” said Linder, who was unable to hear the airplane’s approach over the sound of his equipment. “It was the flash from the crash that attracted our attention.”

Linder and Tom Kinzer, who was helping plow the road, raced about 5 miles to get help. When they returned, they found the surviving crew members calling for help.

“One said he saw the crash coming up,” Linder said. “I guess he tried to tell the pilot over the interphone, but they hit the mountain about that time.”Checks showing more than $42,000 in gambling losses were admitted during the trial of a former manager of an East Sprague club linked to illegal gambling.

Orien W. Gross, the former manager, faced charges for organizing a dice game at Keglers’ Club, located at 426 E. Sprague Ave.

The checks were produced by prosecutors to show the gambling losses at Keglers’ by D.J. MacGillivray Jr., a former real estate executive who was convicted of embezzling $100,000 from his clients.

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