What's New On Tom's Travel Blog?

Flickr has been improved! Almost all photos on this blog come from my Flickr Photostream. You can now go directly to a page that shows all of my Flickr photo sets by following this link. It's the easiest way to navigate in my on-line photos.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Day the Music Died

We have just left Minnesota on a trip to Colorado and Utah. It is a rainy Friday morning, October 2, 2009. The satellite radio is tuned to the '50s station and we are cruising south on Interstate 35 toward the Iowa border as Buddy Holley and the Crickets are playing.

"Hey!, we've never stopped at Clear Lake, to visit the site of the crash in 1959," I think. Let's check it out.

It's easy to recognize the Iowa boarder. The visitor center is in the shape of a barn.

Even the casinos here look like a barn with a machine shed.

The helpful man at the visitor center gives me directions to the memorial at the Clear Lake crash site. He warned us that "it's pretty muddy today out in the field."

I remember the day in February, 1959 when I learned about the accident. I was in the eighth grade. A classmate, Bill Dibellis (spelling?) had heard about it - perhaps he had a "transistor" with him, perhaps he heard it about it before leaving home. He lived close to school. This was a sad day for many of us.

We found the site. It is a few mile north of Clear Lake on a gravel road at the corner of 315th and Gull. You could easily pass by without noticing it except for those glasses.

From the glasses marker it's a half mile walk along the fence line to the crash site memorial.

It is smaller than you might expect.

People leave memorabilia. This hat tells it all for those of us old enough to remember.

And let's not forget the pilot who lost his life that day too.

No comments: